Hey ninja’s, how’s the trading going? 23-year-old Karanjit Khatar and 24-year old Jagroop Khatkar have both been sentenced to two years in a United States prison for stealing Bitcoin through a Twitter scam in 2017. Both men are Canadian Nationals and have been formally sentenced to 24 months in prison and three years of supervised release for stealing 23.2 BTC, according to the U.S Department of justice.
The scam took place at the beginning of October 2017, the pair posed as customer service representatives of HitBTC (Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange) on Twitter with the handle @HitBTCAssist and responded to a post on the legitimate HitBTC twitter account about the process of withdrawing cryptocurrencies. They were able to convince a resident of Oregon to forward sensitive information related to their HitBTC and Kraken accounts.
This information was used to transfer 23.2 Bitcoin from the victim to the Bitcoin wallet of Karanjit Khatar. The stolen Bitcoin’s were sold and then divided equally between them which they used to gamble in casinos and purchase luxury vehicles. Karanjit Khatar reportedly bought a Mercedes-Benz for nearly $40,000 within two days after the theft and also gambled tens of thousands in casinos in Las Vegas.
Karanjit Khatar was later arrested on the 18th of July 2019 at the McCarran International Airport in Las Vegas, while Jagroop Khatkar appeared voluntarily. The two pleaded guilty on the 16th of December 2019 and were ordered to pay $184,511 as restitution.