Authorities in Thailand arrested five foreign nationals linked with a fraudulent cryptocurrency investment platform that fleeced over $27 million from local investors.

According to an initial report from the Bangkok Post, Thailand’s Cyber Crime Investigation (CCIB) Bureau arrested four individuals from China and one from Laos for orchestrating a fraudulent investment scheme that duped more than 3,200 locals.

The CCIB began investing the operation after affected investors came forward in late 2022, claiming that they had lost investments made through with the assistance of the United States Homeland Security Investigations and other international law enforcement agencies.

The five accused were arrested and charged for colluding to commit transnational crime, public fraud and money laundering.

The Office of the Attorney General in Thailand moved to prosecute the suspects in August 2022, before the anti-money laundering office confiscated 585 million baht worth of personal property from the accused.

Related: Thailand’s next prime minister Srettha Thavisin has crypto history

CCIB spokesperson Kissana Phathanacharoen said that investment schemes continue to cause the most financial damage of scams reported in the country. Victims are said to invest life savings into the schemes or take out finance on homes or property.

Thailand’s Securities and Exchange Commission issued new requirements in Jan. 2023 for virtual asset service providers in the country aimed at increasing investor protecting and safeguarding user funds held by custody providers.

As a recent EdaFace report uncovered, scammers have gone as far as targeting MetaMask users using government-owned website URLs to trick victims and access their crypto wallet holdings.

Magazine: Recursive inscriptions: Bitcoin ‘supercomputer’ and BTC DeFi coming soon