In an attempt to defend and return over $150 million stolen from Sony and turned to BTC, law enforcement officials in the United States went to court. The money was stolen by a Sony subsidiary employee faking funds transfer instructions, according to the DoJ, but officials were able to track it down and are now attempting to return it to the corporation.
According to a news release, the suspect was identified as Rei Ishii, who worked for Sony Life Insurance Company Ltd., a subsidiary of global consumer electronics and media behemoth Sony Corporation.
According to the Department of Justice, Ishii misappropriated $154 million as the corporation attempted to transfer funds between accounts. He allegedly forged transaction instructions, allowing monies to be routed to a Silvergate Bank account controlled by him. The monies were subsequently converted to BTC and deposited into a cold wallet.
Ishii allegedly tried to hide his tracks by mailing a ransom note to his Sony Life bosses, stating,
“If you accept the settlement, we will return the funds back. If you are going to file criminal charges, it will be impossible to recover the funds.”
This didn’t deter investigators, who could trace the funds to the cold wallet and recover the BTC after getting the private keys. The hoard is now worth over $189 million at current pricing.
The 32-year-old was apprehended by Tokyo’s Metropolitan Police Department earlier this month. Authorities claimed he was charged criminally with getting $154 million through deception.