Turkey partners Interpol to arrest fleeing CEO of collapsed cryptocurrency exchange

*Investors’ losses could be as high as $2 billion, and the money invested by about 390,000 active users of the Thodex crypto exchange has become ‘irretrievable’, says lawyer for the victims

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

After disappearing into thin air over alleged US$2billion crypto-related transaction frauds in the country, Turkey has launched an international manhunt for Faruk Fatih Ozer, Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO), of one of the country’s major cryptocurrency exchanges.

ConsumerConnect had reported that Ozer was said to have fled Turkey after his company stopped paying clients in the country.

The Turkish Justice Ministry is seeking a so-called red notice under which International Police (Interpol) would help to find, provisionally arrest, and return Thodex Chief Ozer from Albania to Turkey, state-run Anadolu Agency reported Friday, April 23, 2021.

The ministry also noted the Turkish Police have detained 62 people in eight cities, including Istanbul, where Thodex was based, while 16 others remain at large, it said.

It was also gathered that as the Turkish crypto exchange goes bust when the Founder and CEO fled the country, a statement from “an unknown location” Thursday said that Ozer promised to repay investors and to return to Turkey to face justice at a later date.

The government, nonetheless, moved to block the company’s accounts and Police raided its head office in Istanbul, Turkey.

Report indicates that losses could be as high as $2billion, according to Haberturk newspaper, and a lawyer for the victims said the money invested by about 390,000 active users had become “irretrievable.”

However, the fleeing CEO was reported to have been disputed both figures.

He said in a statement on the company’s Web site Thursday, that about 30,000 users have been affected.

Thodex was part of the cryptocurrency boom that has drawn in legions of Turks seeking to protect their savings from rampant inflation and an unstable currency in the country. Inflation hit 16.2% in March, more than three times the central bank’s target of 5%, report stated.

The Turkish lira has weakened 10% against the dollar this year, its ninth consecutive year of losses.

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