An Indian national found himself in deep trouble with law enforcement. Local police discovered that the man from Kerala bough drugs on the dark-web. Police found out that the local used cryptocurrency to purchase the drugs.
The Investigation & Arrest
Narcotics Control Bureau found that 24 year-old K Rahman purchased ecstasy pills online. He paid $27,000 in bitcoin to complete the transaction.
Rahman was expecting to receive the package containing the narcotics from Germany. It was meant to arrive via a Foreign Post Office but the police discovered the package.
Reports claim that the local authorities received a tip on the mans illicit actions. Soon after, police intercepted the package and discovered a large number of pills. After lab testing a sample of the 750 pills it was discovered that the pills contained the party drug MDMA. The total weight of the pills was 159g.
The Times of India reported that Rahman used a fake address in order to disguise his identity. An investigation by the Narcotics Control Bureau uncovered the true identity of the receiver.
Three weeks following the start of the investigations, police traced Rahman successfully. He was apprehended later that day. According to law enforcement reports, Rahman has been using the Foreign Post office to distribute drugs. He was providing the substances to different parties including college students.
Is Crypto a Crime in India?
The Indian ecosystem has witnessed a spate ion crypto-related criminal activities spanning years.
Expert reports from the past state the common nature of scams using cryptocurrency. Numerous big local investors lost money though different scams. Without cryptocurrency most of these scams would not be executable. Figures show that Indian investors lost over $500 million in fraud schemes between 2017 and 2019.
A report from June states that Palghar law enforcement caught up with five people. All five are believed to be affiliated with a crypto fraud scheme targeting investors. The fraud started in 2017. The group of scammers promised huge profits to investors that bought their assets. After purchasing the virtual assets, countless Indian investors lost their money. The schemes masterminds got paid in cheques and cash.
More recently, Indian media reported on a new scam hosted by threat actors. An application targeting people of "high net worth" withing the crypto-space. The criminals went as far as to call victims and pressure them to download the app. The mobile application is advertised as an exchange but is nothing but fraud. Once victims deposit money into the app, their coins end up disappearing.
Manan Shah, founder and CEO of Avalance Global Solutions commented on the reports. He stated that unkown victims lost roughly $50,000 to a similar mobile app. Another investor lost more than $3 Million in similar circumstances.
Is India Banning Cryptocurrency?
India is currently a hot-spot for Crypto-related crime. All the recent fraudulent events surrounding crypto only fuel the possibility of ban. The Indian government is trying to pass a resolution banning crypto.
Recently, the country's supreme court ruled to reverse the ban on virtual assets. The ban was set by the Reserve bank. New reports suggest that Indian authorities are considering another blow to digital coins.
A news source mentioned the consultative meetings occurring in the country. The Reserve Bank and Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology are planning another ban. This is a big blow to the crypto space and suggests that India does not have the resources to regulate the space.
A ban of such form is a full legal process that will not allow cryptocurrencies to operate freely. Other rumors suggest that the Indian government is planing to implement an already existing bill. The bill is titles “Banning of Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2019”.