Binance Impounds 94% of $12.5M Funds Stolen from Abducted Execs

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Binance Impounds 94% of $12.5M Funds Stolen from Abducted Execs
  • Binance CEO exposes a distressing incident where executives were kidnapped during a fake business trip.
  • The abducted executives were forced to empty their crypto wallets.
  • Binance’s quick response led to the freezing of $11.8 million, recovering 94.4% of the total $12.5 million stolen.

Changpeng Zhao, the CEO of the largest centralized exchange, Binance, has revealed a concerning incident involving the abduction of executives from a client company during a supposed business trip in Montenegro. 

In a tweet, Zhao detailed the harrowing event where the executives were forced to empty their crypto wallets, resulting in a substantial loss of approximately $12.5 million. Zhao noted that the stolen funds were primarily in the Tether USD (USDT) stablecoin. Also, he disclosed that the bad actors moved the funds to a Tron wallet after executing their theft operation.

Meanwhile, the Binance CEO noted that his team quickly investigated the on-chain activities and collaborated with partners to address the situation. As a result of their swift action, Binance successfully froze about $11.8 million of the total $12.5 million stolen. This figure implies a 94.4% recovery with only $700,000 left with the fraudsters.

Regardless of the success of the recovery effort, Zhao stressed the importance of staying safe in the digital asset space. On the other hand, some crypto community members pondered why Binance could successfully withhold the stolen crypto funds, drawing parallels with traditional systems. Zhao clarified that cryptocurrencies cannot be impounded unless moved to centralized platforms like Binance.

Meanwhile, this case of abducting a prominent figure in the crypto space to rob them of their crypto holding is not happening for the first time. Early this year, a Dubai-based crypto portfolio manager fell victim to kidnapping and extortion while vacationing in Benalmádena, Spain. Interestingly, the manager was taken hostage by his new colleagues.

The manager had spent several days socializing with the group before being lured to a luxury villa. There, he was bound and held captive, with the kidnappers demanding a ransom of €1 million for his release. 

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