People defrauded by the South African crypto company Bitcoin Wallets have set fire to the house of company manager Sphelele “Sgumza” Mbatha following the collapse of his “investment scheme.”
Bitcoin Wallets promised investors returns of 100 percent by investing South African rand in cryptocurrencies. At the height of its popularity, the company managed to rake in an average of over R2 million ($141,000) in cash deposits every day.
Shortly after the company was shut down by authorities on July 4, Mbatha revealed that he had no cash left to pay out. He also claimed that he was just the manager and that victims of the scam should ask the company’s founder for their money back.
On the night of July 9, rumors of Mbatha’s arrest led to protesters congregating in front of the Ladysmith police station. None of the investors were able to contact him in the wake of Bitcoin Wallets’ closure.
The following morning, it was made clear that Mbatha hadn’t been arrested, as authorities could only act if investors actually opened cases against him.
Another group of protesters gathered around Mbatha’s home that afternoon, but they were again unable to speak to the Bitcoin Wallets manager. Ultimately, his house ended up on fire.
Mbatha, meanwhile, still remains at large.