According to local media reports, FNB, South Africa’s leading financial institution, has denied allegations that it has a banking relationship with the recently collapsed crypto investment company Africrypt. FNB also insisted that it did not enable the investment company’s transaction, which helped Africrypt’s two directors disappear with billions of dollars in investor funds.
The disappearance of investor funds
Nearly two months after Africrypt suddenly ceased operations, the financial institution denied it. At the time, the management of the crypto investment company claimed that Africrypt’s trading system was breached. The directors claimed that this violation damaged customer accounts, wallets and nodes, thereby forcing Africrypt to freeze all accounts.
However, shortly after the alleged breach, Africrypt director Ameer Cajee and his brother Raees Cajee were accused of “transferring collective funds for crypto investments from their South African accounts via Bitcoin on the blockchain in April 2021”. South African media reports estimate that as much as US$3.6 billion in investor funds cannot be accounted for.
At the same time, in response to media inquiries, FNB spokesperson Nadiah Maharaj refused to acknowledge any relationship between FNB and Africaypt. According to media reports, Maharaj, who cited client confidentiality restrictions, said:
FNB reconfirmed that it has no banking relationship with Africrypt. Due to customer confidentiality, FNB cannot provide any information about a particular bank account.
Use encryption mixer
Local media investigations revealed that the Kagi brothers fled to the UK after successfully absorbing funds from investors. These findings have also been confirmed by another investigation by Hanekom Law Firm, which has been hired by victims of Africrypt fraud. In addition to these findings, the law firm’s investigation further revealed that Africrypt’s directors had used mixers to try to confuse the flow of funds.
Although the case has now been reported to Hawks (South Africa’s elite police force), the report quoted law firm founder Darren Hanekom as saying that Africrypt’s FNB account has been “emptied” and that “the entire investor’s funds” may have been Subject to mixed services.
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