Two Austrians and three Chechen ‘heavies’ are facing 20 years in jail for threatening a financial trader’s wife and baby at knifepoint to steal nearly 200,000 GBP in Bitcoin cryptocurrency.
The two unnamed Austrian suspects, a 25-year-old former insurance agent and the 21-year-old son of a biker gang boss, will appear in court next week with three Chechen nationals aged between 20 and 25 who they allegedly hired to help carry out the robbery.
With the help of the Chechens, the two suspects reportedly managed to enter the property of an Austrian-Turkish Bitcoin trader in Wels, a city in the Austrian state of Upper Austria.
According to local media, one of the Chechens sourced a DHL uniform and package which he used to make the man open his front door, after which the suspects invaded his home.
They allegedly dragged the victim’s wife into the bedroom by her hair and then tied her up.
While threatening to harm the woman and the couple’s nine-month-old baby, they demanded to know the trader’s details to his digital Bitcoin wallet, according to reports.
The man then gave up his Ledger Nano stick which stored all his virtual bank account details.
Reports said that the man was even forced to pose for a photo at knifepoint so that the thieves could get past his facial recognition software.
They even told him “please do not smile” while taking the snap.
In total, the criminals allegedly stole 210,000 EUR (180,235 GBP) in cryptocurrency.
The Austrian authorities have since arrested the suspects, although it was not publicly shared how they managed to bust the gang.
The five suspects will appear in court next week on charges of coercion and kidnapping, among others.
According to local media, they face jail sentences of up to 20 years in prison if found guilty.