Four arrested over Taiwan’s first bitcoin robbery

Bitcoin is a virtual currency created from computer code that allows anonymous transactions and its value has soared since it came into being in 2009. (AFP)
Updated 22 February 2018
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Four arrested over Taiwan’s first bitcoin robbery

TAIWAN: Taiwan police have arrested four men over a bitcoin robbery worth 5 million Taiwanese dollars in what they said was the first case of its kind on the island.
Bitcoin is a virtual currency created from computer code that allows anonymous transactions and its value has soared since it came into being in 2009.
Taiwan police said three men in their early twenties lured a man surnamed Tai to the central city of Taichung, pretending to be interested in buying bitcoins.
After Tai showed proof of his bitcoins on his phone, the scammers assaulted him and his friend, then transferred 18 bitcoins worth 5 million Taiwanese dollars from Tai’s account via his phone.
The suspects attempted to pass off the heist as a drunken row by forcing the victim to drink Kaoliang, a strong Taiwanese liquor, Taichung city police said in a statement.
Police arrived at the scene after receiving a call about a dispute and one man was detained. The other two had fled.
“The police saw bloodstains at the scene ... after further investigation, it was discovered to be a bitcoin virtual currency robbery,” the statement released Wednesday said.
It described the case, which happened earlier this month, as “the first domestic case of bitcoin robbery.”
The two other suspects were later arrested, one on the outlying island of Kinmen where he had gone to escape police.
The fourth man, surnamed Shih, believed to be the mastermind behind the robbery, was also detained.
Britain saw its first Bitcoin armed robbery last month, according to reports, in which a virtual currency trader and his wife were threatened with a gun.
Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies are independent of governments and banks and use blockchain technology, where encrypted digital coins are created by supercomputers.
But calls are mounting for virtual currencies to be regulated, and prices have fluctuated in recent months amid concerns over tightened control.


UN debut for New Zealand’s ‘First Baby’: diaper change, peace summit

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern sits with her baby Neve before speaking at the Nelson Mandela Peace Summit during the 73rd United Nations General Assembly in New York, US, September 24, 2018. (REUTERS)
Updated 1 min 48 sec ago
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UN debut for New Zealand’s ‘First Baby’: diaper change, peace summit

  • Ardern is her country’s youngest premier and the first to take maternity leave while in office

UNITED NATIONS: With a mock security pass that lists her as the “First Baby” of New Zealand, 3-month-old Neve Te Aroha made her United Nations debut on Monday when her mother — Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern — spoke at a peace summit in the General Assembly.
Her partner Clarke Gayford, who is the baby’s full-time caregiver, sat with the New Zealand delegation and held Neve as Ardern spoke. Ardern, 38, is only the second elected leader to give birth while in office, after Pakistan’s Benazir Bhutto in 1990.
Gayford posted a photo on Twitter earlier on Monday of Neve’s security pass for the annual gathering of world leaders in New York this week.
He added: “I wish I could have captured the startled look on a Japanese delegation inside UN yesterday who walked into a meeting room in the middle of a nappy change. Great yarn for her 21st (birthday).”
Ardern is her country’s youngest premier and the first to take maternity leave while in office.
The United Nations was delighted to see baby Neve in the General Assembly hall, UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said.
“Prime Minister Ardern is showing that no one is better qualified to represent her country than a working mother. Just 5 percent of the world’s leaders are women, so we need to make them as welcome here as possible,” he said.