Police have prevented two kidnappings and murders to extort cryptocurrency

  • 2020-10-22
  • LETA/TBT Staff

RIGA - The State Police (VP) has detained an approximately 30-year-old resident of Riga near Riga suburb of Teika this autumn, who had planned to kidnap and kill two people, extorting a cryptocurrency worth about half a million euros from them, the VP informed LETA.

In September, as a result of operational activities, officers of the Criminal Investigation Administration of the Criminal Police Department intercepted information that a resident of the city of Riga (born 1989) was planning to kidnap a person. The criminal's goal was to illegally obtain the victim's means of payment - cryptocurrency, by transferring it to other cryptocurrency wallets. He then planned to kill the abducted person. In order to realize his intention, he was actively looking for people from abroad who would commit this crime.

A criminal process was then launched.

During the criminal investigation, evidence was obtained and it was confirmed that, in order to realize his intention, the man tracked the victim, finding out his movement routes and daily routine, then chose a place of abduction and planned another place to extort cryptocurrency from the victim.

In case the victim refused to voluntarily hand over the private keys or passwords from the cryptocurrency wallets, he would be tortured with tools that the man had already prepared. In the criminal proceedings, evidence has been obtained that the organizer of the crime had planned to commit the crime as soon as possible and then kill the victim, the VP informed.

Continuing the investigation, it was further established and evidence was obtained that, in a similar way, driven by greed, the man had planned to kidnap and kill another person who was also involved in the cryptocurrency circulation. As a result of both planned kidnappings and murders, the suspect planned to obtain cryptocurrency and money in the amount of about EUR 500,000, the police found out.

On October 7 of this year, at the time of the crime in Riga's Teika district, when the organizer of the crime was already waiting for the victim in a previously chosen place and was ready to kidnap him, the criminal was detained by the VP's anti-terrorism unit Omega.

In his testimony, the man fully confessed to the planning of the crime and taken into custody. Police say the detainee has previously been convicted of crimes, including fraud.