A successful operation of the low enforcement authorities in Austria, Germany, the Czech Republic and Bulgaria has led to the arrests of several people, among which the Izraeli citizen Gal Barak, who is accused of running an online trading scam ring that has stolen over 100 million Euro form retail investors across Europe in 2018 alone.
Barak was arrested in Sofia earlier this month and awaits deportation to Austria, where he is expected to stand trial.
The organization run by Barak operated a number of fake online forex, crypto and binary options brokers, among which XtraderFX, Optionstars, OptionstarsGlobal, Golden Markets, SafeMarkets, Cryptopoint, 60op.com, Trade.com, Optionbit and option888.
According to the initial information, these websites have accumulated at least 66 million Euro from investors mainly across Europe, of which about 11 million Euro from retail traders in Germany and Austria. However, still not all data has been processed, and investigators expect the final count to be times bigger.
Gal Barak has been a partner of the international cybercrime organization around Gery Shalon, another Israeli and Vladislav Smirnov, who is Russian. The authorities in the USA have filed an indictment against Gery Shalon back in 2015.
The Austrian Home Secretary Herbert Kickl congratulated the Austrian police and their partners in Bulgaria, Germany and the Czech Republic: “This successful action is an important blow against cybercrime, where perpetrators have access to the latest digital technology. All the higher is the performance of the investigators, who, with meticulous work and thanks to the international exchange of information, have made group-like criminal structures visible and smashed up”.