A former NBA player is at the center of a BTC scandal that claimed over $800,000 from its victims. Isaac Edward Austin is accused of having swindled the money from a Ghanaian firm under the guise of using the money to trade in cryptocurrency. The former NBA player reportedly took off with the money, giving one false promise after another when the investors have demanded for their funds back.
Austin, who played for Miami Heat, the Washington Wizards and the L.A Clippers among others, is alleged to have claimed to be a trustee for BTC trading. According to a report by GhanaWeb, Austin used his two companies, the Isaac Edward Austin Trust and TDA Ventures, to get into a contract with a Ghanaian company in July.
After making promises of using the money to trade crypto using automated trading programs, Austin allegedly received 75 BTC from the company. At the time, BTC was trading at $11,000, translating to a total of $825,000.
According to the report, Austin pledged to pay back the money with benefits at the close of trading, but he didn’t. All attempts to recover the money by the victims have all been in vain, with Austin being accused of coming up with flimsy excuses just to avoid paying back what he owes. One of the victims narrated:
“He will take your BTC and you will never get your investment back or your returns. On the day of payment, he will tell you story after story filled with lies of issues why the BTC couldn’t be delivered on the day of payment. From him having a heart attack, to the coin being sent to the wrong wallet, to him being in a queue at the bank, to him waiting for trade to conclude, to the funds being held by the bank.”
The victims have served Austin with a demand notice, but he has yet to respond. Part of the notice states, “If payment is not made within the next 48 hours, we reserve the right to take any legal action necessary to recover the full amount without further notice to you. Please be advised this letter may be used as evidence regarding your failure to pay.”
Africa has seen a rise in crypto scams in recent months, with the scammers taking advantage of the increased popularity of crypto in the continent. As CoinGeek reported, Kenyans lost hundreds of thousands of dollars to Velox 10, a Brazilian crypto scam that promised them a profit of up to $4, 000 a day earlier this year.
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