FBI seizes $100K in NFTs and 86.5 ETH from scammer following ZachXBT investigation

The Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) has actually taken 2 non-fungible tokens (NFTs) worth more than $100,000 and 86.5 Ether (ETH) from a reported phishing scammer.

The declared scammer in concern, Chase Senecal — called Horror (HZ) online — was at first exposed by means of a prolonged investigation by independent blockchain sleuth ZachXBT posted back in September.

In the FBI’s main alert published on Feb. 3, it laid out that Seneca’s residential or commercial property — which likewise consisted of an Audemars Piguet (AP) Royal Oak Watch worth $41,000 — was “seized for federal forfeiture for violation of federal law.”

The FBI’s alert did not information much other details on the experience apart from keeping in mind that all of the residential or commercial property was taken on Oct. 24. The particular NFTs consist of Bored Ape Yacht Club#9658, and Doodle #3114 and were valued at $95,495 and $9,361 at the time of seizure.

The 86.5 ETH was valued at $116,433 at the time of seizure, however is now worth $144,000 at the time of composing.

It is uncertain what the complete scope of legal procedures that have actually happened versus Senecal are at this phase. However, according to the FBI’s police publication, federal loss is a police tool that allows the federal government to “remove—without compensation for the individual—ownership of property involved in a crime.”

“It may occur in a civil procedure, like a lawsuit against the item, or after the conviction of an individual in a criminal trial,” the FBI states.

While the FBI has not bring out a main pointer of the hat to ZachXBT, the on-chain sleuth kept in mind by means of Twitter on Feb. 3 that the residential or commercial property seizure did “come as a result” of his investigation.

“I look forward to hopefully seeing more phishing scammers suffer a similar fate in the future for harming so many people in this space,” ZachXBT composed.

With the seizure of a Bored Ape NFT, individuals in the community have actually joked that the FBI will alter its profile image to Ape #9658.

Photoshopped FBI profile picture: @CryptoWithNick on Twitter

Notably, the fancy AP watch was among the crucial identifiers that assisted ZachXBT unmask Senecal’s identity and on-chain activity throughout the investigation.

In a medium post from Sept. 2, ZachXBT described that after seeing Horroz (HZ) extol the brand-new watch on social networks, he asked “around a few mutual friends who sell watches” and ultimately handled to get in contact with the individual who offered that particular AP watch to Senecal.

Unfortunately for Senecal, the payment was stated to have actually been made on the blockchain by means of using USD Coin (USDC).

“The address HZ used to pay the watch seller $47.5k was DIRECTLY funded by multiple addresses used to scam people with hacked Twitter accounts such as @deekaymotion, @Zeneca_33, @ezu_xyz, [and] @JRNYclub,” ZachXBT composed.

This is not the very first time ZachXBT’s research study has actually played an essential function in assisting federal government authorities. In October, France’s nationwide cyber system pointed out ZachXBT’s work in assisting it capture and charge a group of supposed scammers on suspicion of taking $2.5 million worth of NFTs by means of phishing rip-offs.