Faruk Fatih Ozer, the founder of the Turkish crypto exchange Thodex, is reportedly on the run with billions of dollars of users’ funds. Reports claim the exchange website shut down on Wednesday, with a message saying trading was suspended due to an “unspecified outside investment.”
Many Turks had turned to crypto as a lifeline following the Lira’s plunging valuation. In response, the central bank moved to ban Bitcoin and other cryptos in payment for goods and services. But Ozer’s disappearance has intensified calls for an even greater crackdown.
Crypto in The Spotlight After Founder Goes Missing
Turkish authorities are on the lookout for Ozer after he fled the country with a reported $2 billion. Officials have released a photo of the suspect going through passport control at Istanbul airport. Media reports say he may have flown to either Albania or Thailand.
The Thodex crypto exchange was running forceful promotions, presumably to entice deposits in the run-up to Ozer’s disappearance.