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Things Start to Open Up About the $24 Million Bitcoin Scam

Prasit Srisuwan, the Thai stock investor who was involved in a $24 million Bitcoin fraud has denied all the allegations by claiming himself as a victim.

Few weeks ago, the Thailand Bitcoin scam of $24 million worth came into the light. Police reacted on the complaint and arrested all alleged criminals including Prasit Srisuwan. Prasit has explained entire story from his point of view, and has completely denied defrauding the Finnish man of 797-million-baht ($24 million) worth of money.

According to Prasit, he acted only as a broker in the process and tried to best fulfill his responsibilities as a facilitator. He told that mainly dealings were made between Aarni Otava Saarimaa, Finnish national, and Prinya Jaravijit. He further added that Saarimaa was a buyer for shares in DNA 2002 Plc (Deals in businesses in home entertainment, advertising media, and food and beverage sectors) from Jaravijit who even after receiving the money, failed to grant the Finnish investor any kind of ownership of the shares.

Prasit Srisuwan explained the origin of his relationship with both parties. He became friends with Prinya on Facebook and was later introduced to Saarimaa and his Thai girlfriend Chonnikan Kaeokasee. As they both were looking for promising investment plans, Prasit advised them for looking into blockchain and Bitcoin related businesses.

He stated that Saarimaa was an expert in blockchain technology and cryptocurrency, whereas Chonnikan Kaeokasee was a financial expert. It was entirely their decision, specifically to invest in DNA 2002 Plc, so after finalizing their option, they handed the rest of the dealings to Prasit. Prasit mentioned that it was Jaravijit who failed to keep his word and proved to be troublesome for him and his business. So, he was compelled to ask for some help from Capt. Thammanat Prompao (retired). Thammanat’s efforts to extract necessary and righteous outputs from Jaravijit went in vain and he couldn’t ease the matter as well.

In past, Crime Suppression Division (CSD) suspected the fraud to be collaboration of eight people, which included Jiratpisit Jaravijit, his brothers Prinya and Tanasit, their parents Suwit and Lertchat Jaravijit, former soldier Thammanat Prompao, businessmen Chakris Ahmad, and Prasit Srisuwan.

According to CSD, the Finnish investor didn’t receive 500 million shares each of 0.5 baht worth. Instead, only 350 million shares were provided, thus resulting in the fraudulent activity that was brought later to the Thai Police.The CSD investigators, led by deputy commander Pol Col Chakrit Sawasdee, are trying their best to soothe the victim. But Chakrit Sawasdee considers the case very complicated one. He mentioned the hardships during investigation and time he had to put in to get some results.He said:

This case is complicated. We had to carefully examine documents and trace the money trail. We collaborated with Amlo and it took us almost seven months to get approval for the arrest warrants for the first group.

He further added:

For the money laundering charge, we are verifying the amount of money with commercial banks only in the accounts of the siblings and their family and relatives. The money needs to be frozen and brought back to the victims…….When it is fraud, the complainants and the accused can talk and have arbitration. However, money laundering is a crime that cannot be bargained away.

At the moment, CSD has named three banks that broke the law and participated in money laundering, namely, Bangkok Bank, Siam Commercial Bank and Kasikornbank. These banks failed to notify Anti-Money Laundering Office (AMLO) before transferring money more than 2 million baht, therefore, total of 51 bank accounts have been frozen and 14 plots of land worth 176 million baht have been frozen by CSD.

While the investigation is in process and many new names are popping in, the ones that have been accused until now are dealt by the Thai police. The police has rejected all the innocent claims by Srisuwan and accounted him for a fraud. Moreover, Jiratpisit was arrested while he was shooting for his movie, and her sister Suphitcha, turned herself in to Thai police. Both got bailed out but are not allowed to leave the country as investigation is ongoing. The mastermind behind all this, Prinya is somewhere in USA. He is currently out of reach of the Thai police and couldn’t be arrested, so they are looking for ways to successfully bring him in. The extradition treaty signed between Thailand and USA has been under consideration for getting Prinya back to Thailand.

Fatir Malik

Electrical engineer by profession, turned into blockchain developer. Fatir contributes regularly with his insights about latest developments in fintech sector. Contact the editor at editor.opinions@blockpublisher.com

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