Hong Kong Cryptocurrency Entrepreneur Accused of Scamming Investors of Millions

On January 7, 2019, The South China Morning Post reported that several residents had been duped of over HK$3 million (~$382,000) in a crypto mining scheme by entrepreneur Wong Ching-kit.

Backstory: Face of a Mining Operation

Wong Ching-kit, a cryptocurrency entrepreneur, has been accused of running a scam by several

Hong Kong residents who accuse him of making away with just under $400,000 after convincing them to invest in cryptocurrency “mining machines.”

The individuals in question are being represented by the Democratic Party, who have said that over 20 people have filed complaints about Wong since last year regarding their same mining scheme.

The amount of money lost from each individual ranges between ~$2,550 and ~$127,000.

This isn’t the first controversial incident that Wong has been involved in. Known as “Coin Young Master” on the Internet, he was allegedly connected to a recent incident in Sham Shui Po in which up to ~$765 in cash was thrown from a high rise building. He was arrested after the stunt for disorderly conduct.

His flashy persona is flaunted online where he promotes various cryptocurrency ventures including one called “File Cash Coin” of which he is allegedly the founder.

The Scam

Wong’s Social media presence was the main source for finding investors for his schemes as several individuals have reported finding out about him online. Wong apparently asked investors to hand over money in mining technology for “filecoin” and promised them that their investment would reap profits within three months.

It was soon discovered, however, that the cryptocurrency in question isn’t traceable on the global market and thus, useless. Wong did not, however, return investors’ money as promised. Ms. Chiu, a scorned investor who lost more than ~$15,300 said:

“At first, I was told I could get a refund if filecoin could not be launched in time. [But] when we asked for a refund, he used delaying tactics and made different excuses to turn us down.”

Democrat Ramon Yuen Hoi-man, a Sham Shui Po district councilor, has urged that the authorities get involved and has called for more regulations involving cryptocurrency investments.

Wong’s Response

Despite the many claiming that he has cheated them, Wong has maintained an air of bravado through it all and has said online that he hadn’t cheated anyone out of money.

“I sell mining machines only but am treated as if I have killed people. When they make money, there is no thank you. When they lose money, they call it a scam,” he said. He has also claimed that these allegations are part of a smear campaign brought on by his business rivals.

The authorities have announced that there will be an investigation opened into Wong’s case. This is, they claim, due to the eight figures in his bank account and his undisclosed source of income which could count as money laundering. Wong was born Kwan Tsz-kit but changed his name after being convicted of theft back in 2012.

The perpetuation of cryptocurrency scams online is nothing new as fraudsters go as far as impersonation to carry out their scams, often succeeding in stealing millions from victims.

Author: Tokoni Uti
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BitMEX Taps Former Hong Kong Regulator as Chief Operating Officer

BitMEX, one of the largest cryptocurrency trading platforms, has named Angelina Kwan, formerly managing director and head of regulatory compliance for Hong Kong Exchanges and Clearing Limited (HKEX), as its chief operating officer. Kwan, who joins the company as it rides exceptional growth, will work with regulators worldwide to develop rules that will support cryptocurrency’s continued growth.

24 Years of Leadership Experience

Kwan, who will be based in Hong Kong, said she hopes her experience working with regulators worldwide will help her in developing a “constructive dialogue” with regulators, she told the South China Morning Post.

China and South Korea last year banned digital coin sales while other markets such as Hong Kong have not fully regulated cryptocurrency. Norman Chan Tak-lam last month said cryptocurrency trading carries high risk while the city’s investment regulator, the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong, has warned about fraud and manipulation in the cryptocurrency market.

“I believe Angelina’s decision to join us is a signal that the global markets are shifting focus to the rapidly-expanding domain of crypto-coins,” said Arthur Hayes, BitMEX CEO and co-founder. “Angelina’s vast experience in regulation, trading platforms, business development, restructuring, and investor and stakeholder relations will be pivotal as we continue the push towards mainstream cryptocurrency adoption and broaden our community.” Kwan brings vast experience in both regulation and traditional finance, Hayes added.

Hong Kong | Source: Shutterstock

Kwan, who spent eight years at the Securities and Futures Commission of Hong Kong, brings more than 24 years of experience in leadership roles for financial products in Asia and the United States. She has worked at global financial services firms, covering retail securities trading and asset management.

“My most memorable accomplishments — from successfully restructuring and relisting a bankrupt financial services company, spearheading the establishment of new operations or companies, to serving on a number of boards and committees — have been joining organizations that are at the cusp of making a major breakthrough, so it’s with a sense of great excitement that I take on the challenge of driving BitMEX to new market heights,” Kwan said. “In addition to being a true market leader among trading platforms, BitMEX shares my value of gender inclusion, particularly in STEM fields. Cryptocurrency markets present an exciting new opportunity for women to get involved in the intersection of finance and technology, two fields in which they are chronically under-represented.”

BitMEX Rides Major Growth

In the third quarter of 2018 alone, BitMEX broke the industry record for 24-hour bitcoin trading volume on two separate occasions.

BitMEX recently occupied Cheung Kong Center’s 45th floor, one of the most expensive offices in the world, with an average per-square-foot rent of $28.66, which is more than nine times that of the $3.18 the company was paying at its previous headquarters in Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbor, a warehouse district. The company’s expansion plans caused it to require the entire floor, rather than the half-floor it had originally intended to occupy.

Author: Lester Coleman
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