Hong Kong Boy Kidnapped, Ransom Demanded in USDT: Report



In Tseung Kwan O, Hong Kong, a 3-year-old boy was abducted from a shopping mall on July 3.

Following the incident, the kidnappers demanded a ransom of 660,000 USDT, which is about HK$5.15 million.

Hong Kong Kidnappers Demand USDT

The boy’s parents were instructed to download the Telegram messaging app and purchase the USDT ransom from an offline OTC store. They were also warned against contacting the police to keep their child safe.

The Hong Kong Police Organized Crime and Triad Bureau (OCTB), which specializes in organized crime, took immediate action. Late at night on July 3, detectives combed through CCTV footage from Tseung Kwan O Plaza and nearby areas to trace the kidnappers. By 5:25 a.m. on July 4, the boy was found unharmed, and the suspects were apprehended.

Notably, the city has experienced a 9.4% rise in violent crime during the first five months of this year. The cases increased to 4,237 compared to 3,872 in the same period in 2023.

Illicit Use of USDT

Tether, the company behind USDT, has been linked to a significant number of illicit transactions. In 2023, it was involved in $19.3 billion of illicit transactions, down from $24.7 billion in the previous year. The stablecoin, particularly on the Tron blockchain, was the preferred currency for terrorist financing in 2023.

United Nations (UN) also released a report stating that the stablecoin had been at the forefront of money laundering and scams in Southeast Asia.

Meanwhile, police in Sichuan province, Southeast China, dismantled an underground bank earlier this year that was involved in illegal foreign currency exchanges using the USDT stablecoin. This underground operation handled transactions worth at least 13.8 billion yuan ($1.9 billion).

The criminal group, primarily based in Chengdu, served individuals seeking to smuggle medicine and cosmetics or purchase assets overseas. Authorities arrested 193 suspects across the country and frozen assets valued at 149 million yuan.



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