Jarryd Hayne – a former NRL superstar – has supposedly parted with $780,000 after falling prey in a Bitcoin scam. The athlete, who was slammed with a prison sentence for allegedly raping a woman, was tricked by a fellow inmate.
The scammer is currently in jail after being accused of swindling $4.6 million from family and friends in a Ponzi scheme.
Conned Even Behind Bars
As reported by Daily Mail, the person in charge of the Bitcoin fraud was Ishan Seenar Sappideen, who met Hayne in the prison of Cooma, Australia. The former promised a significant return on investment related to the primary cryptocurrency to the ex-rugby player and other inmates. To present himself as an expert in the field, he claimed he had previously earned nearly $300 million for clients.
Six fellow prisoners, including Hayne, bit the hook and transferred over $2 million between 2020 and 2022. The funds were sent by people outside the jail into accounts controlled by Sappideen due to the lack of online access in the facility.
Despite having a settlement that protects his six-figure investment, the whereabouts of Hayne’s funds remain unknown.
Australian law enforcement agents organized the transfer of Sappideen to another correctional facility following the information about his alleged fraud.
“Earlier this year, CSNSW intelligence officers became aware of allegations an inmate at Cooma Correctional Center was attempting to coerce and advise fellow inmates to make transactions on the financial markets.
The accused inmate … has since had his security classification reviewed to enable a higher level of supervision and less freedom. CSNSW refers to suspected criminal activity to the Police Corrections Intelligence Unit who shares intelligence with relevant state and federal police,” a spokeswoman added.
Hayne, who became a world rugby champion with Australia in 2013, was charged with aggravated sexual assault over a woman in Newcastle in 2019. He was recently found guilty of two counts of sexual intercourse without consent and sentenced to spend at least three years in prison .
Other Sportsmen That Became Victims of a Crypto Scam
The Brazilian soccer players – Gustavo Scarpa, Mayke Rocha de Oliveira, and Willian Bigode – have also put their names on the list of athletes lured by cryptocurrency fraudsters. they collectively lost more than $5 million after investing in an alleged fraudulent firm called Xland.
“I’ve always seen stupid people fall victim to pyramid schemes and scams. Finding myself in a situation like that is horrible,” Scarpa regretted.
Interestingly, Bigode was rumored to have a hand in the scam. He denied the accusations, reminding that he is also a victim of the scheme, losing over $3.3 million.