A Turkish court sentenced Faruk Fatih Ozer, the founder of one of the largest Turkish crypto exchanges Thodex, and his brother and sister to 11,196 years, 10 months and 15 days in prison, finding them guilty of fraud using information systems, leading a criminal community and money laundering. Bloomberg writes. The prosecutor’s office requested up to 40 thousand 462 years in prison for Ozer, but the court imposed a more lenient term.
The verdict was announced by a court in Istanbul on Thursday evening. In total, there were 21 defendants in the case, the Turkish Anadolu Agency reported. Sixteen of them were acquitted of fraud charges due to lack of evidence, four were released, and the rest were sentenced to various prison terms on other charges. In addition to the prison term, the court imposed a fine of a total of 26.6 billion liras (about $991.3 million), including 8.9 billion liras (about $330.4 million) for the defendants personally.
Faruk Fatih Ozer founded the crypto exchange Thodex in 2017. In 2021, the crypto exchange suddenly stopped trading. According to local media reports, Ozer fled to Albania with his brother and sister, taking with them $2 million from investors. In 2022, he was arrested in Albania at the request of Interpol and extradited to Turkey in June 2023. According to the prosecutor’s office, the damage from the fraudsters’ activities amounted to $13 million, although according to the American blockchain firm Chainalysis, the damage is much higher – about $2.6 billion.
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