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Bitcoin Worth $3B from PlusToken Ponzi Scam Seized by Chinese Authorities

2 mins
Updated by Kyle Baird
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In Brief

  • China announces the seizure of $4.2 billion worth of cryptos from the PlusToken Ponzi scheme.
  • Chinese authorities plan to liquidate the confiscated "coins" under existing laws.
  • PlusToken was one of the largest event crypto Ponzi schemes.
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A Chinese court has published a breakdown of the total crypto assets seized from the PlusToken scam including about $3.3 billion worth of Bitcoin (BTC).

Some commentators say the timing of the news points to attempted FUD aimed at causing panic in the market.

Chinese Police Confiscated Over 194k BTC from PlusToken

According to the court ruling published on Scribd, Chinese police seized nine major digital assets as part of its crackdown on the PlusToken Ponzi scheme.

Apart from 194,775 BTC worth $3.3 billion, the confiscated stash also includes 833,083 ETH, 487 million XRP, and 79,581 BCH as well as 27.6 million EOS, 6 billion DOGE, 74,167 DASH, and 213,724 USDT.

In total, the Chinese police carted over $4.2 billion worth of cryptocurrencies based on the current market prices. The Bitcoin horde alone represents over 1% of the current BTC circulating supply.

China Bitcoin

Perhaps a bit of comedic relief from the news is the fact that China now holds 6 billion of a “meme crypto” like Dogecoin. The seized DOGE amounts to almost 5% of the token’s circulating supply as of press time.

The revelation of the seized PlusToken funds comes following the Yancheng Intermediate People’s Court denial of the appeal filings lodged by convicted principal agents of the scam.

As previously reported by BeInCrypto, Chinese police arrested 109 individuals associated with the Ponzi scheme back in June. The news of the arrests marked the first major law enforcement action by Chinese authorities against participants of a crypto Ponzi scam.

China to Liquidate Seized PlusToken Cryptos

A rough translation of the court document revealed that there are plans to liquidate the Bitcoin and other seized assets “according to existing laws.” The court statement also revealed that the funds earned from the sale of these assets will be sent to the national treasury.

In 2019, some entities sold several crypto tokens traced to the PlusToken Ponzi scheme. Indeed, reports about vast crypto holdings associated with the scam hitting the market triggered a few price drops in 2019.

The PlusToken scam reportedly defrauded over 2 million victims to the tune of about $5.7 billion. Together with OneCoin and BitClub, it remains one of the largest cryptocurrency scams in the history of the industry.


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Osato Avan-Nomayo
Osato is a reporter at BeInCrypto and Bitcoin believer based in Lagos, Nigeria. When not immersed in the daily happenings in the crypto scene, he can be found watching historical...