Dan Kitwood/ Getty Images
  • Brazilian police seized $28.5 million of bitcoin from an alleged Ponzi scheme earlier this week.
  • The police said it was the largest cryptocurrency seizure in the country's history.
  • They also arrested 5 individuals and confiscated 21 luxury cars and other high-value goods related to the alleged scheme.
  • Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.

Brazilian Federal Police carried out one of the biggest crypto seizures in the country earlier this week when they seized 591 bitcoins (worth $28.5 million based on current prices) related to an alleged Ponzi scheme.

In a press release, police said that a company headquartered in the Region of Lagos operated a system of Ponzi schemes linked to speculation in the cryptocurrency market. The companies involved in the fraud had billion of dollars and half of their transactions occured in the last year, police said.

The police also arrested five individuals linked to the scheme and confiscated over $3 million in cash, 21 luxury vehicles, jewelry, luxury watches, and other documents.

Glaidson Acácio was one of the individuals arrested in the operation. According to a report from CNN Brasil, he is suspected of running the scheme that offered returns of up to 15% for investors. The report also notes that the bitcoin seized will be liquidated and available to the courts.

The police said this will be the largest seizure of cryptocurrencies by the task force.

They called the operation "Operation Kryptos," explaining that it's the Greek word for "hidden," which gave they say "gave rise to the term crypto."

The arrest and crypto seizure comes after police arrested a self-proclaimed "bitcoin king" in July as part of a separate case involving a $300 million embezzlement scheme.

Read the original article on Business Insider