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FBI seized scammer’s NFTs worth $100,000 after ZachXBT’s investigation

FBI seized scammer's NFTs worth $100,000 after ZachXBT's investigation

Some of the items seized were a Bored Ape Yacht Club and Doodles NFT, 85.6 Ether, and a flashy Audemars Piguet watch. These items helped ZachXBT figure out who the alleged fraudster was.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has taken control of two non-fungible tokens (NFTs) worth more than $100,000 and 86.5 eth tickers worth $1,652.

Chase Senecal, who goes by the online name Horror (HZ), was found to be a possible scammer after an in-depth investigation by the independent blockchain detective ZachXBT was published in September.

In a statement released on February 3, the FBI said that Seneca’s property, which included a $41,000 Audemars Piguet (AP) Royal Oak Watch, was “seized for federal forfeiture for violation of federal law.”

The FBI’s statement said that all of the goods were taken on October 24, but it didn’t say much else about what happened. At the time they were taken, Bored Ape Yacht Club#9658 and Doodle #3114 were worth $95,495 and $9,361 each.

At the time of seizure, the 86.5 ETH were worth $116,433, but at the time of writing, they are worth $144,000.

At this point, it is not clear how many court cases have been brought against Senecal. The FBI’s law enforcement alert, on the other hand, says that federal forfeiture is a law enforcement tool that lets the government “take, without paying the person, ownership of property linked to a crime.”

The FBI says, “It may occur in a civil procedure, like a lawsuit against the item, or after the conviction of an individual in a criminal trial.” 

ZachXBT wrote on Twitter on February 3 that the property seizure “came about” because of his investigation. The FBI has not said out loud that ZachXBT helped with the case.

ZachXBT said, “I hope that more phishing scammers who hurt so many people in this domain will have the same thing happen to them in the future.”

A Bored Ape on the FBI Twitter profile?

People in the community have joked that after the Bored Ape NFT was found, the FBI would change its profile picture to Ape #9658.

During the investigation, the colorful AP watch was one of the most important clues that helped ZachXBT figure out who Senecal was and what he was doing on-chain.

ZachXBT said in a Sept. 2 Medium post that after seeing Horroz (HZ) brag about the new watch on social media, he asked “about mutual acquaintances who sell watches” and eventually got in touch with the person who sold Senecal that particular AP watch.

Unluckily for Senecal, the payment was alleged to have been made on the blockchain using USD Coin USDC, which is currently trading $1.00 lower. ZachXBT wrote: “The address HZ used to pay the watch seller $47.5k was DIRECTLY paid for by a number of addresses that were used to scam other people using stolen Twitter accounts, such as @deekaymotion, @zeneca 33, @ezu xyz, and @jrnyclub.”

This is not the first time that ZachXBT’s research has helped government officials in a big way. In October, France’s national cyber unit thanked ZachXBT for helping them catch and charge a group of alleged scammers who were thought to have stolen $2.5 million worth of NFTs through phishing scams.

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About MahKa

MahKa loves exploring the decentralized world. She writes about NFTs, the metaverse, Web3 and similar topics.

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