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Raj Kundra

Rs 2000 Cr Bitcoin scam: Shilpa Shetty’s husband Raj Kundra under ED scanner

Raj Kundra

Businessman and actor Shilpa Shetty’s husband Raj Kundra has come under the scanner of the Enforcement Directorate (ED) in connection with the Rs 2,000 crore GainBitcoin case.

Kundra is presently being questioned in Mumbai.

The bitcoin scam came to the light in April, when Police arrested Amit Bhardwaj and his brother Vivek Bhardwaj, who owned GainBitcoin and GB mining ventures, from Bangkok.

They had floated many schemes and reportedly published advertisements in Media publications to push their schemes. Bhardwaj used to lure investors by promising 10 per cent of investment value each month for 18 months. Bhardwaj is also said to have links with Pakistan intelligence agency ISI.

The Pune Police had arrested seven accomplices of Bhardwaj in two alleged cheating cases.

Following the Bhardwaj arrest, entrepreneur and angel investors Nikunj Jain and Sahil Baghla were also held on the grounds of having key connections with Bhardwaj and his company. The duo were allegedly a part of the conspiracy and working as partners with Bhardwaj.

According to investigators, they built the portal – GBMiner, a BTC payment gateway and mining pool. These entities were used by Bhardwaj in the scam.

Meanwhile, cyber cell of Delhi Police had arrested founders of bits2btc Kamal Singh and Vijay Kumar for duping 2,500 people for over Rs 100 crore. The duo allegedly along with their third partner – SS Alagh had strong links with Bhardwaj and his company Gainbitcoin.

During the investigation, police found that the trio had played important role in operations of Gainbitcoin.

Over the past two years, cryptocurrency-based investments have been attracting the significant confidence of investors. According to Income Tax Department, more than $3.5 billion worth of transactions have been conducted via virtual currencies including Bitcoin.

Bitcoins, largely due to its unprecedented rise, has been at the centre of future investment talks among businessmen and celebrities. Shilpa Shetty had also expressed her interest in cryptocurrency.

However, the government and RBI have time and again came up with a warning for users trading in Bitcoin or cryptocurrency.

“There have been several media reports of the usage of VCs, including Bitcoins, for illicit and illegal activities in several jurisdictions. The absence of information of counterparties in such peer-to-peer anonymous/ pseudonymous systems could subject the users to unintentional breaches of anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) laws,” reads RBI circular.

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