An entrepreneur has claimed to police he was tortured for hours by masked robbers who entered his home in an apparent attempt to steal millions of euros in bitcoin, according to Spanish media.
American Zaryn Dentzel is the cofounder of Tuenti, a social network once hailed as “the Spanish Facebook.”
According to reports by El Espanol, Europapress, and El Pais this week, all citing police sources, Dentzel told police that a gang of four to five men stormed his flat in Madrid, Spain at about 3 P.M. local time on Tuesday, October 9.
According to his account, the men covered the security cameras in Dentzel’s apartment before they tied, bound, and gagged him and sprayed something in his eyes. The 38-year-old was then forced to reveal the passwords to his bank accounts and electronic wallets that stored cryptocurrency worth “tens of millions of euros,” per El Espanol.
Dentzel said the gangsters beat him and slashed him across the chest with a knife while shooting him with a Taser gun multiple times.
The assault was reported to have taken place over a four-hour period.
Aside from Dentzel’s password, his assailants reportedly made off with devices including laptops, phones, and a USB drive.
According to El Espanol, police were alerted to the attack by a neighbor who heard shrieks for help coming from Dentzel’s flat. Witnesses nearby reportedly said they saw a group of masked men escaping to the street while clutching bags.
According to El Pais, Madrid’s Policia Nacional are leading the investigation and working to corroborate Dentzel’s account. No arrests have yet been made. El Espanol, citing police sources, said the gang’s attempts to steal any of Dentzel’s cryptocurrency were unsuccessful.
Cryptocurrency-related theft has consistently hit the headlines. Insider’s Jason Ma reported that the FBI is warning that criminals are increasingly using cryptocurrency ATMs and QR codes to trick people into handing over their money.
Last month, a Coinbase user lost $11.6 million in under 10 minutes after falling for a fake-notification scam, Insider’s Kevin Shalvey reported.