Bengaluru Bitcoin Scam, Investigation Gains Pace With New Twists
In a recent development to the ongoing investigation of the Bengaluru Bitcoin scam, the Special Investigation Team (SIT) is intensifying its efforts to unveil the truth behind the alleged theft of government funds and cryptocurrency payments to state officials. While the probe is in full swing, the hacker’s bail remains in question, pending a medical evaluation for drug addiction. This case, as reported by Indian Express, marked by arrests and political controversy, continues to captivate the public’s attention.
Bengaluru Bitcoin Scam Investigation Update
The SIT of the Karnataka CID’s relentless investigation into the Bengaluru Bitcoin scam has reached a critical juncture. Notably, this case revolves around Srikrishna Ramesh, also known as Sriki, and his associates, who are accused of stealing government funds and making cryptocurrency payments to state officials to conceal their activities.
Meanwhile, the crypto scandal first came to light in November 2020, when the Central Crime Branch (CCB) of the Bengaluru police uncovered a stash of Bitcoins in Sriki’s possession. Sriki initially faced arrest for drug procurement on the darknet with cryptocurrency. However, his case soon expanded into alleged hacking activities, targeting online poker sites, cryptocurrency exchanges, and government systems.
Sriki’s arrest in the drug case led to the revelation of his involvement in the hacking of the Karnataka government’s e-procurement cell. Notably, the event resulted in a theft of a staggering Rs 11.5 crore, according to reports.
The Ongoing Controversy
The recent developments in this ongoing saga have added new layers of intrigue. Meanwhile, the SIT is aggressively pursuing the cancellation of Sriki’s bail, while conducting searches and arrests involving individuals who were part of the original investigation in 2020 and 2021.
However, the court’s decision to await a medical evaluation for Sriki’s drug addiction issues has further delayed the proceedings.
Notably, one of the original investigators, Sridhar Poojar, has approached the high court, challenging a case registered by the SIT regarding alleged tampering of devices seized from the hacker and his associates in 2020. The high court has instructed the SIT not to take any action against Poojar until October 9, pending further investigation.
Earlier this week, the SIT arrested three individuals tied to the hacker gang’s money laundering scheme, shedding light on the movement of the stolen Rs 11.5 crore from the Karnataka e-procurement portal in July 2019. Meanwhile, the ED previously charged them with laundering these funds, and a substantial sum has already been recovered.
Nevertheless, the hacker and his associates have taken their case to the Karnataka High Court, seeking to dismiss the e-procurement cell hacking case. They argue that a police inspector, rather than the designated CID cybercrime station officers, conducted the investigation.
Meanwhile, as the SIT works diligently to uncover the truth, the case remains in the spotlight, drawing widespread attention and speculation.