Cryptocurrency suspects granted bail

WINDHOEK: Five people accused in an alleged cryptocurrency scheme were each granted bail of N.dollars 20 000 in the Windhoek Magistrate’s Court on Tuesday.

Tango Muulyau, Shi Zi Jun, Lin Shu Lin, Chen You Yi, and Carlos Alejandro are implicated in an alleged cryptocurrency scam involving the recruitment of young Namibians.

The suspects face charges alongside Fan Jia, Guo Linzie, Haifeng Zheng, Li Zirian, Chen Wuyu, Neng Jun Wu, Wu Weiyang, and Toivo Herman, whose bail applications were dismissed.

The group was arrested on 03 October 2023 in Windhoek. Initially, over 80 Namibians were arrested, accused of targeting foreign investors from various countries under the pretext of legitimate investments.

The suspects collectively face 203 charges, including 98 counts of trafficking, utilising the services of their trafficked victims for fraud amounting to N.dollars 9 million, money laundering, and failure to pay taxes. Young Namibians were deceived with false promises of marketing jobs and subsequently fell vic
tim to trafficking. They were trained by foreign nationals to create fictitious profiles on social media platforms to establish relationships with unsuspecting citizens of the United States of America, urging them to invest in cryptocurrency.

In his ruling, Magistrate Mutafela Likando said he was not convinced that the suspects whose bail was denied, are worthy candidates for bail.

‘Investigations are at a preliminary stage of a complex case. It is not in the public interest and administration of justice that the accused persons be released on bail,’ Likando stated.

He ruled that the individuals granted bail report to the Windhoek Police Station every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. They are also required to surrender their travel documents and seek written permission before leaving Windhoek.

The bail conditions further stipulate that the suspects must not interfere with investigations and must attend all court dates until the matter is finalised.

‘In case of failure to appear in court, a warrant of arres
t may be issued against you, and your bail will be provisionally cancelled, with the bail money being provisionally forfeited to the State,’ he said.

The matter has been adjourned until 15 February 2024 for further police investigations.
Source: The Namibia Press Agency