A 20-year-old former Boston Public School’s valedictorian involved in a major cryptocurrency theft. Using his advanced knowledge of cryptocurrency and hacking, he doped hundreds of crypto investors from their hard earned money.
The Cryptocurrency Theft
A UMass Boston student from Allston, Joe Ortiz used his technical skills to collect millions of cryptocurrencies. Eventually, he was arrested in California in July and was accused of running an intricate scheme. The scheme allegedly involved hacking into the victim’s cryptocurrency accounts by taking control over their mobile phones. In this way, he drained $5 million from the victims. As per the mentioning from Santa Clara County authorities, after spending $150,000 on parties in rented mansions and collecting designer merchandise, Ortiz had $250,000 in cryptocurrency at the time of getting arrested Los Angeles Airport July 12 while he was on his way to Europe.
Panos Yiotis was a high school classmate of Ortiz and had also participated with him on the school robotics team. Furthermore, he called Ortiz “very tech-savvy” and mentioned that he had recently contacted him for advice on the digital currency. In an interview, he said,
“I remember asking Joel a few months ago for tips on how to get into bitcoin and cryptocurrency trading. I would see his snaps [Snapchat postings] talking about it and how he’s made so much money off of it but I never knew or thought he was doing this illicitly.”
Ortiz is due back in court by August 9, 2018. He is been charged with 28 counts of computer hacking, identity theft, and grand theft. Ortiz is currently being held on $1 million in bail in California.