Cryptocurrency broker Tahoe Digital Exchange appears to be engaged in fraud against California consumers
The California Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) has received a complaint from at least one California resident regarding a crypto investment.
The victim met a woman he thought was in love with him. After the victim shared his dream of wanting to buy a motor home and travel, the scammer convinced him she could help him reach his goal through cryptocurrency. The victim gave the scammer $64,000 to invest in Tahoe Digital Exchange. The scammer then told him his investment was now worth almost $200,000. But when the victim tried to transfer the money out, Tahoe Digital Exchange told him he needed to pay more then $30,000 in taxes. After that, Tahoe Digital Exchange asked for another $20,000 for him to get his money back. The victim had no more money, so Tahoe Digital Exchange froze his assets, and he never heard from the woman again. The company operated a website at https://Tahoe-dex.com/dist.
This appears to be what is commonly called an “Advance Fee scheme,” which can take many forms, as discussed here: https://www.fbi.gov/scams-and-safety/common-scams-and-crimes/advance-fee-schemes. This also appears to be what’s known as a Romance Scam, which is described here: https://dfpi.ca.gov/2022/05/20/romance-scams-and-crypto-assets-fact-or-fraud/.
The DFPI urges consumers to exercise extreme caution before responding to any solicitation offering investment or financial services. To check whether an investment or financial service provider is licensed in California, consumers may contact the Department for questions or inquiries at email@example.com or call toll-free at (866) 275-2677. If a consumer believes a person or company has violated state law or acted improperly regarding a consumer financial product or service, they may file a formal complaint with the DFPI at https://dfpi.ca.gov/file-a-complaint/.
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