The Hong Kong police are currently investigating the JPEX cryptocurrency exchange after receiving multiple complaints involving virtual assets worth around HK$34 million (US$4.3 million). This investigation follows a warning issued by the Hong Kong Securities and Futures Commission (SFC) against JPEX for its unregulated operations. Around 83 users have filed complaints stating that they are unable to withdraw their funds.
The SFC has flagged JPEX for using deceptive tactics. They have cautioned potential investors about the exchange, stating that JPEX has not filed any license applications. The SFC has advised the public to be cautious when encountering offers that seem too good to be true. The SFC also revealed that JPEX made false claims about obtaining licenses from overseas regulators and promised high returns on savings products. The exchange relied on social media influencers, who were often paid promoters, to spread misleading information.
After the SFC’s warning, some JPEX users reported difficulties in withdrawing their virtual assets from their online accounts. One user mentioned that they only received 25 out of the 1,000 Tether tokens (USDT) they attempted to withdraw, with the rest being held as processing fees.
A Telegram channel dedicated to JPEX-related complaints stated that it received approximately 200 complaints, totaling over US$10 million in virtual assets. However, blockchain transaction records indicate that JPEX has over 30,000 users, potentially involving more than US$300 million, according to the group.
JPEX entered the Hong Kong market over two years ago and conducted aggressive promotional campaigns, including advertisements at prominent MTR stations. The exchange also expanded its operations to Taiwan earlier this year, with entertainer Nine Chen serving as its spokesperson.
However, Chen has stated that his contract with JPEX ended in late July. The ownership of JPEX remains opaque due to the company’s non-transparent corporate structure.
As the investigation continues, the Hong Kong police are urging victims to come forward and report their cases. Given the increasing number of scam incidents in the cryptocurrency industry, the community is closely monitoring the developments surrounding JPEX.