Pavel Lerner, a leader of the cryptocurrency exchange EXMO (due to the information of the leading cryptocurrency mass media), got in touch after his kidnapping in Kyiv several days ago. This was announced on the exchange’s official website:
On December 29, Pavel got in touch. At the moment, he is safe, his health is all right, but he is in a deep stress so he won’t give any official comments in the nearest future.
EXMO website states that rumors around the Lerner’s kidnapping hinder the investigation. However, it doesn’t mention that Pavel is a Head of the exchange; on the contrary, the website says that the Lerner’s activity hasn’t presupposed the access to the users’ assets.
It is known that, besides occupation on EXMO platform, Pavel Lerner is running several personal blockchain projects that don’t regard the exchange activity. Nonetheless, in Tuesday, when the businessman disappeared, the exchange website temporarily stopped working because of the cyber attack, as was stated on the company’s Twitter.
According to the words of the former Minister of Interior Affairs’ counselor Anton Gerashchenko, Pavel Lerner had paid around one million dollars in Bitcoin to his kidnappers, after that he was released in a state of shock. The information is provided by the Financial Times.
Police define Lerner’s case as a “Bitcoin-connected kidnapping and blackmail.” Anton Gerashchenko mentioned that this was the first situation in Ukraine, connected with Bitcoin. A victim was “lucky to stay alive,” – admitted the deputy.