A tree feller from Pretoria East is one of 30,000 people who fell victim to the BTC Global cryptocurrency scam, according to the Rapport.
The man said he could kick himself. His wife said from the beginning it looked like a scam, because the returns of 14% per week were just too good to be true.
He learnt about BTC Global from a client, who said they had received good returns from their investments.
That convinced the tree feller and he invested R31,000.
He received profits of R13,000 from his original investment, and so put in another R100,000 – half of which was savings out of his home loan.
On his new investment, he received around R17,000 in profit – and then the money dried up.
First investors were told the “star trader” they had bet on, Steven Twain, had twins and that he was too busy to do payouts. Then his house was broken into and his computer stolen.
“Then we all knew, something suspicious was going on,” he said.
14% per week
Where the BTC Global website previously promised investors returns of 14% per week, it now contains a message which states that Steven Twain is missing and asks victims to stop threatening harm to the admin team.
“We are as shocked and angry as everyone. But we all knew the risks involved in placing funds with Steven. We all became complacent with Steven. And all of us funded him independently,” the website states.
“Until Steven Twain resurfaces or is found, there is nothing the admin team can do. If anyone has any information on how we can get in contact with him please get in touch and let us know.”
The Hawks are investigating BTC Global, as is private investigator Mike Bolhuis – who has been contacted by 100 complainants.