Two South African brothers have allegedly vanished with bitcoin worth $3.6 billion that was housed on their cryptocurrency investment platform.
According to various reports, a local law firm, Hanekom Attorneys, hired by affected investors, says it cannot find Ameer and Raees Cajee, the founders of Africrypt. The firm has warned crypto exchanges around the world to be on the lookout should anyone try to sell the digital currency on their platforms.
The brothers have said to have disappeared with 69,000 bitcoins and are believed to have fled to the United Kingdom.
The signs of trouble had started in April when Africrypt warned clients of a hack, when bitcoin was at its highest, according to Bloomberg. Oddly, though, it asked clients not to alert law enforcement authorities or lawyers as it “would slow down” the recovery process.
“We were immediately suspicious as the announcement implored investors not to take legal action,” Hanekom Attorneys told Bloomberg.
“Africrypt employees lost access to the back-end platforms seven days before the alleged hack.”
The report said that the Cape Town-based law firm hasn’t been able to track the brothers down and has reported the incident to the Hawks, South Africa’s police unit which targets serious crimes like organised crime and corruption.
This is the second big loss to hit South African cryptocurrency investors in the last two years, with Johann Steynberg, CEO of trading platform Mirror Trading International, disappearing with 23,000 bitcoins.