Serial Australian conman Peter Foster, who is alleged to have netted $1.73 million worth of stolen bitcoin by impersonating someone else, has been arrested in Queensland, Australia.
According to a report by The Sydney Morning Herald, on August 20, Mr. Foster was apprehended while walking his dogs on the beach in Port Douglas, Queensland. He was dramatically tackled and arrested by two detectives posing as joggers.
The mechanics of Foster’s alleged Bitcoin crimes remain partially unclear. What is clear, is that Foster is accused of acting under the false name Bill Dawson and scamming victim Konstantinos Stylianopoulos.
Stylianopoulos entrusted Bitcoin to Foster, who allegedly diverted it to his own account. The fraud enabled Foster to get his hands on 1.73 million Australian dollars (~US$1.24 million) worth of bitcoin in a series of transactions, some ranging as high as $890,000.
As a result, Foster has been charged with five counts of publishing false or misleading material to obtain an advantage, ten counts of dishonestly obtaining financial advantage by deception, and knowingly dealing in the proceeds of crime with intent to conceal.
Described by some as a career criminal, Foster had previous involvement with a multimillion-dollar weight-loss scam and has been in and out of jail in Australia since the mid-90s. After an initial hearing, it was reported that Mr. Foster had been refused bail. The case will return to a Sydney court on October 22.