Johann Steynberg, the CEO of Mirror Trading International (MTI), a bitcoin Ponzi scheme, was recently arrested by Brazilian law enforcement after he was caught using a false document, reports from the South American country revealed. Following the arrest, credit cards, laptops, and fake identification were also seized. Steynberg, who is on Interpol’s wanted list, was apprehended in the Goiás province by members of an elite unit within Brazil’s military police.
Mirror Trading CEO presented false documents.
In a statement confirming the arrest, the Brazilian military police also shared details of the steps taken before the decision to capture Steynberg was made. The statement explains: “After an intense work of identification and follow-up, and with the help of information passed on by the Federal Police, it was possible to identify and approach the suspect, who presented a false document at the time of the approach.” Other than being arrested for his role as the key mastermind behind the bitcoin Ponzi scheme, the Brazilian military police said Steynberg must also pay a fine relating to his use of a false document.
Steynberg disappeared in late December 2020.
As reported earlier, Steynberg disappeared in late December 2020 when reports emerged that several Mirror Trading International investors were unable to withdraw their funds. Shortly after his disappearance, a South African court ruled that MTI had to be placed under provisional liquidation. However, since then, other masterminds of MTI — which was named the biggest bitcoin scam in 2020 — have waged a battle to stall the process of liquidating the collapsed company. Meanwhile, a court ruling on a petition that seeks to have MTI declared an illegal business is still pending.