$1 800 000 USD
DESCRIPTION OF EVENTS
"Cesar (Fuego) Guzman, 38, a paraprofessional with the Department of Education, Allan (Joker) Nunez, 36, and Darrell (Bishop) Colon, 37, joined Louis Meza, 35, to lure [a] cyber-millionaire victim into a minivan posing as a livery car on Nov. 4, 2017."
"The chunky trio may not seem like high-tech hoods, but Manhattan District Attorney Cy Vance Jr. said everyone is getting clepto around crypto."
“The investigation revealed that Mr. Guzman recruited both of these individuals based on their shared involvement in a Bronx motorcycle crew or group,” Vinocur said. "According to Assistant District Attorney James Vinocur, Meza chose the victim while Guzman recruited the other two members." "MEMBERS OF a Bronx biker gang, one sporting a skull tattoo, kidnapped a friend and robbed him of nearly $2 million in cryptocurrency."
"Meza, of Jersey City, originally set up the victim, his buddy, by getting him to get into the fake Uber." "Colon was hiding in the rear row of seats and popped out with what appeared to be a gun to threaten the victim for his Ether"
"Meza asked the victim to enter the minivan posing as an Uber. Once the individual stepped into the vehicle, they were held at gunpoint by Colon who was hiding behind the rear seat of the car. Nunez was responsible for driving the car until the victim revealed their ethereum wallet’s password to the criminals. After about two hours, the individual gave in and surveillance cameras captured Guzman and Mez entering the victim’s house and stealing $2 million worth of ether."
"A three-men biker gang kidnapped and robbed a man of $1.8 million in Ether in New York, USA, in 2017. The victim was tortured and even had a gun pointed to his head but eventually managed to escape after two hours."
"Nunez drove the victim around for two hours at gunpoint until he coughed up the location of his 24-word passphrase. Meza, who was caught on surveillance camera, and Guzman, whose head is inked with tribal tats, broke into victim’s apartment where they nabbed his digital wallet and stole $1.8 million, prosecutor James Vinocur said at the men’s arraignment in Manhattan Supreme Court."
"Meza, of Jersey City, was arrested and charged [in] December ." "Louis Meza [was] arraigned in State Supreme Court on December 12, 2017 in New York. Meza is accused of kidnapping and robbing a friend of $1.8 million worth of Ether cryptocurrency." "In December 2017, Meza was charged with kidnapping and robbing the victim by Manhattan prosecutors. At that time, video footage of the incident was used to capture Meza, however, the rest of the suspects were nowhere to be found."
In June 2018", however, the New York Daily News reported that Bronx biker gang members Cesar Guzman (Fuego), Allan Nunez (Joker) and Darrell Colon (Bishop) were prosecuted for helping Meza in the ether heist."
"Nunez’s attorney told the judge that City Councilman Ritchie Torres penned a letter on his client’s behalf attesting to his good character and the charity work he does for his community in the Bronx."
"The attorney, Rob Georges, also argued that his client should get relatively minimal bail considering that fallen film producer Harvey Weinstein, another defendant in Manhattan, posted $1 million cash, which is just a fraction of his reported worth."
“And he’s not suspected of being nearly as violent,” Georges argued.
"The three men pleaded not guilty in front of Justice Melissa Jackson."
"Guzman’s attorney said that in addition to working for the Education Department, his client attends night classes at Lehman College."
"Luckily, law enforcement officers were able to retrieve majority of the cryptocurrency." "Most of the stolen digital dollars were recovered, prosecutors said."
An unknown cyber-millionaire became victim of theft. Three biker gang members tricked the victim into a van, and threatened him with a gun until he revealed the location of his 24 word passphrase. While it took many months, eventually the thieves were brought to justice and most of the funds were returned.
HOW COULD THIS HAVE BEEN PREVENTED?
The first and best defense is to not allow anyone to know the extent of your holdings. You can set up a throw-away wallet with a smaller balance, which can be given up in the event of being held hostage. However, a more secure strategy may be to store the wallet and any phrases at a secure location, such as a bank, casino, or other high security facility. Greater security yet can be achieved through setting up a multi-signature wallet, which requires multiple devices to sign an outgoing transaction. This could even include requiring signatures from trusted friends or family.
South African Bitcoin Trader Tortured, Drugged, and Beaten in a Crypto Robbery - WIVACOIN (Mar 5)
Three men charged in $2M cryptocurrency kidnapping and robbery - New York Daily News (Mar 8)
Bronx Biker Members Charged in $2 Million Ether Kidnapping: Biker group thanks veterans with a barbecue: – Insane Throttle Biker News (Mar 8)