The case has gripped the nation and Reuters reported on April 29 that Police Lawyer Aase Kjustad Eriksson told a news conference that, after an 18 month investigation, the police have now had “reason to suspect Tom Hagen of murder or conspiracy for murder”.
When Norwegian millionaire Tom Hagen reported that his wife had been kidnapped in October 2018, included was a ransom note demanding $10 million worth of the cryptocurrency Monero.
Now, after Hagen’s arrest by local authorities on April 28 on suspicion for the murder of Anne-Elisabeth Hagen, it seems as if the ransom demand could have simply been a way to cover up the crime.
He has not yet been charged with the crime. However, Police Inspector Tommy Broeske said: “there was no kidnapping, no real negotiating counterpart or real negotiations. There are indications of a will [sic] to sidetrack [the investigation].”
Hagen’s lawyer said he denied any involvement.
$10M Monero in ransom
As one of the richest people in Norway, Hagen is worth roughly $161 million. It’s unknown exactly how much he has invested in Bitcoin (BTC) or other digital assets. His wife, Anne-Elisabeth, was reported missing from their home near Oslo on October 31, 2018.
Despite the turn in this case, there have been instances in which cryptocurrency has been paid for a kidnapping ransom. In January, Singaporean Mark Cheng was taken hostage in Thailand and tortured for a $740,000 BTC ransom. He transferred $46,000 before managing to escape.
Missouri Watchdog Hits Unregistered Crypto Brokerage With Cease and Desist
The Missouri Secretary of State Securities Division has sent a cease-and-desist letter to an unregistered crypto firm.
Announced Wednesday, Mavixbtc Limited was ordered to halt operations after allegedly misleading investors. Mavixbtc faces civil penalties and investigation costs of over $30,000 for its fraudulent representation as a brokerage and investment company.
To garner customers, St. Louis-based Mavixbtc began offering investment services advertising returns of 55 percent “in as little as 6 days,” according to the secretary of state’s office.
The office also alleges:
“Mavixbtc falsely claims to be registered with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority and the Securities Investor Protection Corporation. The company also fraudulently uses the registration number of a registered investment adviser representative who has no knowledge of Mavixbtc.”
“The novelty and promise of quick profits by investing in cryptocurrencies can be enticing to investors,” Securities Commissioner David M. Minnick said.
“But there are significant, real risks associated with these non-traditional investments, and scam artists are hard at work trying to defraud investors. Always check with our office before you invest.”
The division offered Mavixbtc the opportunity to make a case for why restitution should not be imposed.
The North American Securities Administrators Association (NASAA) launched the second wave of “Operation Cryptosweep,” an initiative to crack down on crypto related scams. As of August, 35 enforcement decisions have been taken and nearly 100 more are pending.