Google Targets Cryptocurrency Scammers with RICO Lawsuit

Google becomes the first tech giant to go after crypto scammers.

Scammer being secretive in the Google digital space.
Created by Kornelija Poderskytė from DailyCoin
  • Google has filed a lawsuit against crypto scammers.
  • The company accused the scammers of defrauding users via its platforms.
  • The company said it is the first tech giant to take action against crypto scammers.

Google has filed a lawsuit in the Southern District of New York against a group of scammers based in China, accusing them of using its platforms to distribute and advertise fraudulent crypto apps.

The Alphabet Inc. company said it is the first tech giant to institute legal action against crypto scammers, noting that the move is a step toward setting a precedent to establish user protection.

Google Slaps Crypto Scammers with RICO

According to a CNBC report on April 4, Google’s lawsuit alleged that scammers Yunfeng Sun and Hongnam Cheun created and published at least 87 fraudulent investment and crypto exchange apps on Google Play to dupe users.


The company said the duo ran an elaborate scheme “since at least 2019,” luring victims to downloading the apps through text messaging campaigns using Google Voice, online promotional videos on YouTube, and affiliate marketing campaigns that rewarded users with commission for signing people.

Following the accusations, Google is bringing civil claims against the defendants under the Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations (RICO) law, a criminal statute that targets organized crime syndicate members with prison terms of 20 years and severe financial penalties.

The company is also seeking breach of contract claims, citing the defendants “made multiple misrepresentations” about their identity and location to upload their fraudulent apps on Google Play.


Google’s general counsel Halimah DeLaine Prado said the lawsuit allows the tech giant to use its resources against bad actors and demonstrate its stance on crypto crimes.

“In 2023 alone we saw over a billion dollars within the U.S. of cryptocurrency fraud and scams and this [lawsuit] allows us to not only use our resources to protect users, but to also serve as sort of a precedent to future bad actors that we don’t tolerate this behavior,” DeLaine stated.

Claiming it suffered damages above $75,000 to investigate the matter, Google seeks a permanent injunction against the defendants for general damages and to prevent them from creating accounts on its platforms or accessing the company’s services.

Read about Solana Co-founder’s take on the duopoly of Google’s and Apple’s app stores:
Solana Co-Founder Rips App Stores: Is Crypto the Answer?

Stay updated on SAGA’s debut on Binance:
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This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Brian Danga

Brian Danga, a Kenyan crypto reporter, is dedicated to delivering breaking news and updates from the cryptocurrency world. With a background as a Web3 writer and project manager, he recognizes the importance of unbiased reporting. Holding an LLB degree from the University of Nairobi, Brian's analytical skills contribute to his accurate news reporting. His personal interests include cooking, watching documentaries, reading, and engaging in intellectual discussions.