How YouTuber Crypto Gouv Stole € 4 Million By Scamming Its Subscribers

Crypto Gouv, a mysterious YouTuber specializing in cryptocurrencies, has scammed between 200 and 300 internet users. The scammer disappeared with € 4 million in loot. While the victims were looking for the thief’s true identity, the Paris prosecutor’s office opened an investigation.

In mid-July, the Paris prosecutor’s office opened an investigation the Crypto Gov. YouTube channel, our colleagues from France Inter report. About forty complaints have been filed against Youtubeur, whose true identity is unknown.

Within a few months the videographer had managed to federate a community of 4,000 Internet users. Like many Youtubers, he took advantage of the enthusiasm generated by the increase in the price of cryptocurrencies. On private groups Discord and Telegram, the scammer provided free investment advice and market analysis. He has also issued commercial recommendations.

Also read: Beware, LinkedIn is flooded with cryptocurrency scams

The Crypto Gov. Scam

Quickly, Crypto Gouv offered its community to pool their investments. Over time, he succeeded convince between 200 and 300 people entrust them with their money. To lure his victims, the YouTuber promised very high capital gains, despite the recent drop in the cryptocurrency market.

In detail, Crypto Gouv has created different communities based on the proposed investments. The videographer specifically launched a group dedicated to non-fungible tokens (NFTs), the Play-to-earn StepN application and cryptocurrency trading. To earn the trust of subscribers, he also set up a company in the UK.

Investors placed one hundred euros, others several tens of thousands of euros. In no time, many investment groups and projects have been created by Crypto Gov “Explains Maître Jérémy Asta-Vola, the lawyer of four plaintiffs, interviewed by France Inter.

This is where the trap for Internet users closes. After recovering funds from its community, Crypto Gouv packed up. In a video posted to YouTube on July 9, 2022, he reveals the scam exists. Without the slightest remorse, the scammer even explains behind the scenes to its subscribers, now aware that they have been manipulated for months.

“It is as if you have entrusted a sum to a financial investment advisor and he has simply walked away with your money. There is a mass audience that is interested in these practices. Inevitably, some malicious people see it as an opportunity. This type of scam is on the rise ” warns the master Jérémy Asta-Vola.

To tease, Crypto Gouv even wrote a full scam tutorial on its Telegram and Discord groups. He explains, for example, that he has purchased hundreds of certified accounts, with identity cards or passports, on cryptocurrency exchange platforms, such as FTX, Binance or KuCoin. Crypto Govt specifies to have protect your identity with a VPN and a proxy server.

In the video, now deleted from YouTube, Crypto Gouv even specifies that he is aware of it risk up to five years of imprisonment. The Youtubeur then passed out in the wild with a jackpot of € 4 million.

The hunt for Crypto Gov

Crypto Gov victims quickly got organized to help each other out and get their money back. A Discord server has been created to list all information related to the case. In the meantime, a website has been created to facilitate the submission of complaints.

At the same time, some subscribers began to search the true identity of Crypto Gov. During his exchanges with the community, the scammer would reveal his name to reassure his victims. Photo of his ID card accompanying him, he claimed to be Romain Fournier.

Note that Crypto Gouv only used photos ofa bank of royalty-free images. By doing a reverse search, we find the trace of the photos on Depositphotos.

Based on this information, many Internet users have come into contact with an individual called Romain Fournier on social networks. The man bears a slight resemblance to the person seen in the photos. It was a red herring. As he explains on his Twitter account, the date and place of birth on the Crypto Gov ID are different from his. The internet user explains that he was the victim of identity theft.

Very well prepared, apparently he had used Crypto Gov a false identity card. With this fictitious currency he tried to open a company in France, probably with the aim of deceiving his victims. The French authorities became aware of the deception and the request was denied. Furthermore, all the addresses provided by Crypto Gouv turned out to be fake. They correspond to mailboxes located in Paris. The scammer took the time to cover up his tracks.

Most importantly, Crypto Gov would have done it convert all stolen funds into Monero, an anonymous collateralized cryptocurrency. This conversion prevents assets from being tracked on the blockchain. On the Monero blockchain we cannot identify the person who sent the money, nor the address that receives the funds, nor the amounts exchanged. The mesh is completely opaque.

Cryptocurrency scams of this type are not uncommon. Recently, the manager of Tradex Asset Management, a Spanish trading company, set sail with an estimated € 4 million prize pool. According to the Iberian press, it was a completely classic Ponzi scheme. This type of scam involves trapping investors by paying them back with the money injected by the new victims.

Source:

France Inter

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