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Brazilian footballers say they have been victims of crypto scams

SAO PAULO — Three Brazilian footballers, including Nottingham Forest midfielder Gustavo Scarpa, say they have been the victims of a multimillion-dollar cryptocurrency scam, according to local media reports.

Scarpa, his former teammate Mayke at Club Palmeiras in Sao Paulo, and Willian Bigode of Club Fluminense in Rio de Janeiro all claim to have lost huge sums to a crypto firm called Xland, which promised investors returns of up to five percent a month on their money . according to the reports.

“I’ve always seen stupid people fall victim to pyramid schemes and scams. Finding yourself in such a situation is terrible,” Scarpa, 29, said in a WhatsApp audio message broadcast by Brazil’s largest broadcaster TV Globo on Sunday.

Scarpa, who was named 2022 Brazilian league player of the year, and 30-year-old defender Mayke made complaints to the police in November shortly after winning the league title with Palmeiras.

Scarpa says he invested 6.3 million reais ($1.2 million) in Xland. Mayke says he has invested around four million reais ($762,000).

Both say they were persuaded to invest in the company by Willian Bigode, a former Palmeiras teammate.

But Bigode, 36, says he’s also a victim.

“I’m not a scammer, I didn’t take anyone’s money. I’m also a victim because I haven’t gotten my own money back to this day,” he said on Instagram.

He put his losses at 17.5 million reais.

Lead investigator Vinicius Salva told TV Globo there was “strong evidence” of fraud.

But Brasilia-based company Xland denied running a pyramid scheme and said it would repay its customers.

It said it suffered huge losses from the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, which filed for bankruptcy in November.

Source: Crypto News Deutsch

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