Police in India have rescued three people,
including two cryptocurrency traders, that were
held to ransom for two weeks to the sum of 80
Bitcoin BTC ($840,000).

At 2.30am on Sunday, a man with a pistol was
spotted outside Shankara Residency in
Bhankrota. The man was apprehended and told
authorities about his accomplices, which
prompted a 13-hour operation to rescue the
trio.

Authorities arrested a gang of seven that were
holding the captives. The gang is also thought
to be involved in various kidnapping, extortion,
loot, and robbery cases, the Hindustan Times
reports.

Jaipur police named the three rescued people
as 19-year-old Luftan Shaikh, 44-year-old
Malang Shah, and 36-year-old Mohammad
Shazad.

The captives told police they were tortured by
the gang members with “belts, sticks, and
other things.”

“The gang kidnapped Shaikh and Shazad, two
bitcoin traders, and demanded 80 Bitcoins
($840,000) worth ₹8 crore ($1.2 million). Shah
was kidnapped two days later. The gang
demanded ₹10 lakh from his family members,”
deputy commissioner of police Vika Sharma
said.

It’s not entirely clear why there is a disparity
between the value of Bitcoin and crore
demanded by the kidnappers. (Presumably it’s
the result in fluctuations between BTC/USD and
INR/USD.) It’s also unclear if the captors were
able to extort any of this money or
cryptocurrency from their victims. Presumably,
the ransom wasn’t paid.

Cryptocurrency kidnappings
Unfortunately, this isn’t the first time criminals
have kidnapped people to extort cryptocurrency
out of the victim’s family and friends.
In January, police in South Africa arrested two
suspects that demanded $100,000 worth of
Bitcoin after kidnapping a teenage boy. The
boy was returned to his family a few days after
the kidnapping.

Earlier this year, the wife of one of Norway’s
richest men was kidnapped and allegedly held
to ransom for $10 million worth of Monero.
Sadly though, recent reports have stated that
the Norwegian woman was probably murdered,
with the kidnapping and ransom being nothing
more than a cover-up.