New Delhi: Amit Bhardwaj, the master mind behind bitcon scam, who was on Thursday arrested by Delhi police has been remanded to police custody for 13 days.
He allegedly duped investors to the tune of Rs 2,000 crore with Ponzi marketing schemes through the GainBitcoin website.
Bhardwaj fled the country couple of months ago and was hiding in Dubai. He later slipped to Bangkok. A lookout notice was issued for him. He was arrested at the Delhi Airport by the Pune police after the police arrested seven persons associated with Bhardwaj.
Confirming the arrest, Pune Police Commissioner Rashmi Shukla, said, "We received information that Bhardwaj was coming to Delhi. We apprehended him on Monday morning and brought him to the city."
Bhardwaj and his associates allegedly duped investors in Mumbai, Pune, Nanded, Kolhapur and other places in the state. Bharadwaj allegedly lured people from Nanded and other areas to invest in Bitcoins, while promising higher returns. He had formed the company GainBitcoin and invited investments in Bitcoins.
A case was also filed at a police station in Nanded on January 24, 2018 in connection with the scam.
Last month the Maharashtra government said that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) would probe the alleged scam involving the GainBitcoin website.
Bitcoin, a virtual currency, is not regulated in the country and its circulation has been a cause for concern among central bankers the world over for quite a while now
The Reserve Bank of India has cautioned users, holders and traders of virtual currencies, including bitcoins several times.
The government has also said that it does not recognise crypto currency as legal tender in India as of now. Bitcoins or such crypto-currencies are not legal tender and those indulging in such transactions are doing it at their own risk, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said in January. Jaitley emphasised that the Centre's consistent position was that such currencies were not legal tender.
Bitcoin has fallen heavily in recent sessions as worries about a regulatory clampdown on the nascent market and panicked investors push prices lower. The virtual currency hit a peak of almost $20,000 in December.