According to a statement by the Turkish Ministry of the Interior, the creator of the cryptocurrency exchange Thodex Faruk Fatih Özer has been detained in Albania. The founder had fled Turkey and made it impossible for customers’ monies to be recovered. According to the statement, the extradition procedures against him have been begun by the Interpol section of the Turkish police.
Almost 400,000 users were left in the dark and without access to their assets when the exchange went down unexpectedly and its founder and CEO fled to Albania in 2021. In April of the same year, Turkey filed an international arrest notice for the fugitive businessperson and founder of Thodex. Ozer is believed to have left with over $2 billion in assets belonging to investors.
In the beginning, Ozer established a platform in 2017 that was first known as Koineks Teknoloji Inc. In 2019, he established a new business under the name Thodex as a response to the negative image that his previous venture had garnered owing to issues in crypto trading.
Following the implementation of a new regulatory framework for the trading of cryptocurrencies in Turkey, issues started to arise on the Thodex platform, including the occurrence of delayed and unsuccessful money transfers.
At the moment, Turkey is considered one of the world’s most important crypto marketplaces. In the country, there are as many as 5 million people who are actively investing in cryptocurrencies, however, pinpointing an exact figure is challenging.
Turkey’s crypto mania has accelerated in recent years as investors flocked to Bitcoin to ride the currency’s worldwide upswing, hedge against inflation, and preserve investments from the weakening of the Turkish currency lira.