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Albanian court orders extradition of cryptocurrency boss to Turkey

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An Albanian court on Thursday ordered the extradition of the founder of cryptocurrency exchange Thodex to Turkey, Turkey’s state-run Anadolu news agency reported.

Faruk Fatih Özer is suspected of fleeing Turkey with his clients’ assets and was arrested in Albania in August.

It was the Elbasan Court of First Instance that ruled to extradite Özer, Anadolu said.

Özer was sought on charges of fraud and founding a criminal organization. He fled Turkey last year and left investors unable to recoup their funds.

Thodex had launched aggressive campaigns to lure investors. It had first pledged to distribute luxury cars through a flashy advertising campaign featuring famous Turkish models.

But the Thodex exchange suspended trading in April after posting a mysterious message days earlier saying it needed five days to deal with an unidentified outside investment.

Turkish security officials then released a photo of Özer going through passport control at İstanbul airport on his way to an unspecified location.

Media reports said the exchange shut down while holding at least $2 billion from 391,000 investors.

More than 60 people linked to the company were arrested.

Turkey issued an international arrest warrant after he fled with a reported $2 billion in money investors poured into Thodex.

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