US DOJ charges former CTO of blockchain company for fraud scheme

Hull Invest

U.S. Department of Justice Said Rikesh Thapa, the former chief technology officer of a blockchain company, has been arrested on suspicion of defrauding his company of more than $1 million.

DOJ did not name the company in its Dec. 7 news release.

Tapa’s LinkedIn In 2017, he co-founded blockchain company Blockparty and revealed that he served as CTO until 2019.

according to DOJ filing On December 7, Thapa allegedly defrauded the company of over $1 million in cash and crypto.

In 2018, an unnamed blockchain company faced bank trouble transferring about $1 million to Tapa’s personal account for safekeeping. Unfortunately, the founder and his CTO mismanaged funds with personal and extravagant spending.

To cover up the crime, Tapa falsified bank statements, claiming to hold about $21 million. After a hard time, he allegedly refused to give his $1 million back to the company.

In another instance, Thapa conspired to sell approximately 174,285 utility tokens of blockchain companies for an undisclosed amount. He failed to transfer the funds to the company, claiming that the cash he received from the investor was counterfeit.

Thapa was arrested by the Department of Justice on October 7, 2022. Speaking about the arrest, U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said:

“Rikesh Thapa allegedly betrayed the trust of the company because he was responsible for protecting a significant sum of money. Tapaente went to great lengths to cover up his fraud.”

After his arrest, Tapa was charged with wire fraud and could face up to 20 years in prison if proven guilty.

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