U.S authorities have filed criminal charges against a Chicago man, accusing him of stealing Bitcoin and Litecoin from his employer, which he then later used for personal cryptocurrency trading.
The man in question is named Joseph Kim, who is 24 years of age, and out of Chicago —he worked as a trader for Consolidated Trading LLC. In September of last year, Consolidated Trading LLC expanded its trading operations with a virtual currency trading division.
Kim Sent Over Three Million USD to his own Account
According to court docs obtained by CryptoBuzz News Network, a week after Joseph Kim was assigned to this new department he began moving Litecoin(LTC) and then later Bitcoin (BTC) funds from the company’s accounts to his own personal account. Managers took notice of Joseph Kim’s actions and then confronted the accused perp on several occasions.
For instance, when managers noticed that Joseph Kim moved 970 Litecoin ($46,000) from the company’s account Joseph Kim told them he moved the funds to a Trezor wallet for security reasons.
When bosses noticed Joseph Kim transferring Bitcoin out of company wallets, Mr. Kim claimed company Bitcoin funds were being blocked and that he was merely in the middle of taking steps to unblock the funds and then recover the Bitcoin.
Nevertheless, despite a multitude of excuses bosses noticed that after nearly sixty days, cryptocurrencies remained missing from the company accounts.
Over $700,000 in Losses
According to a criminal complaint you can read here, Consolidated Trading LLC. found that during these months, Joseph Kim had siphoned off some $3,149,000 worth of Bitcoin and roughly $46,000 worth of Litecoin from the company accounts.
Joseph did eventually return $1,276,000 worth of Bitcoin on his own accord, but a larger amount remained missing.
That is when Consolidated Trading decided to confront Mr. Kim with their discoveries. Joseph Kim then admitted to taking the funds in an email he sent.
“It was not my intention to steal for myself from [Consolidated Trading] and until the end I was perversely trying to fix what I had done. I can not believe I did not stop myself when I had the money to give, and I will live with that for the rest of my life. You have every apology I have to give, I am so sorry to betray you all like this.”
The company did get back another $1,351,000 worth of Bitcoin from Mr. Kim after they sent representatives to his house, nevertheless, $673,000 worth of Bitcoin were unaccounted for, and are presumed to be lost.
Evidence further suggests that Joseph Kim traded for Bitcoin (BTC) with personal funds and then lost money doing so.
He is suspected of taking funds from the company in an attempt to cover for personal trading losses, believing be could play off Bitcoin’s erratic price fluctuations and recover some of his own funds and then return the missing money back to Consolidated Trading LLC.
A warrant you can read here for his arrest was then issued on February 15th, and Mr. Kim turned himself in to authorities and appeared in court the next day.
He faces criminal fraud charges. The maximum sentence he could serve is twenty years in prison if found guilty.