Online scam using fake ads with Dutch celebrities grossed millions; The Amsterdam man held
A 29-year-old Amsterdam man was arrested last week for allegedly posting bogus online ads featuring famous Dutch people. Geert Wilders, Ali B. and Jort Kelder were used in some of the fraudulent advertisements to convince unsuspecting people to invest money. The funds quickly disappeared and the victims lost their money.
Tens of thousands of people in the Netherlands and other countries are said to have fallen into the trap, bringing the gang into tens of millions. The authorities suspect Amsterdam of having organized a criminal organization.
The Financial Crimes Inspectorate, FIOD, believes more suspects were involved, a spokesperson said. Authorities raided buildings in Amsterdam, Velserbroek and Sweden last week. They seized millions of dollars in buildings, cars, watches, cryptocurrency and bank accounts.
The advertisements appeared on social networks. For example, one said that “the most recent investment” by a well-known Dutchman “amazes experts and terrifies big banks”. Those who clicked on the ad read a claim that the celebrity explained on TV how they found a loophole and the big banks wanted to thwart their plan. Anyone who wished could enter their personal data. Then someone would call them to help them create an account.
The data of more than a million people would have been on the server of the criminal organization.