13-Year-Old Bitcoin Kidnap Victim Found Safe

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A 13-year-old South African boy was found safe after his kidnappers demanded bitcoin ransom in the amount of roughly $120,000.

Katlego Marite was snatched while playing outside in the South African province of Mpumalanga last Sunday. Three men in a car grabbed him and drove off.  The parents later received a ransom letter demanding the bitcoin funds.

What makes the case unusual is that Katlego’s parents are not wealthy, and they had no idea what cryptocurrency is.

A family friend located the suspects car at a nearby bar after viewing CCTV footage and notified police.

Details beyond that point remain limited, however, police were quick to announce the status of Marite.

Police spokesman Brigadier Leonard Hlathi commented:

"The combined efforts by the police and the community paid off when Marite was found safe and sound. The circumstances under which he was found are a subject of investigation."

It was not immediately known if the bitcoin ransom had been paid either.

US Government Opens Criminal Probe Into Bitcoin Price Manipulation

Citing sources familiar with the probe, Bloomberg is reporting that the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) is working alongside the Commodities and Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), the markets regulator, to focus on illegal trading activities in cryptocurrency markets.

"Spoofing" - the tactic of creating false orders in order to drive buying or selling - and "white washing" appear to be at the center of the investigation. "White washing" involves traders buying shares of a venture through one broker while selling shares through a different broker.

The investigation reportedly is tied to bitcoin and ethereum trades specifically.

- Aaron Goldstein, Gambling911.com

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