Rei Ishii, an employee at Tokyo-based Sony Life Insurance Co., Ltd, was accused of stealing $154 million from the company’s financial accounts. Ishii reportedly did this by fabricating transaction instructions, causing the monies to be transferred to an account at a bank in La Jolla, California that Ishii controlled. He then used Coinbase to convert the stolen monies into over 3879 Bitcoins and sent to an offline crypto cold wallet with Bitcoin address: bc1q7rhc02dvhmlfu8smywr9mayhdph85jlpf6paqu.
Soon after the theft was discovered, Ishii managed to convince his boss and several Sony Life executives not to help investigators. If Sony accepts the settlement, he promises to return the money to the company.
Unfortunately, after an investigation in coordination with Japanese law enforcement agencies, the FBI obtained the private key, which allows them to transfer all Bitcoins to the FBI Bitcoin wallet. As a result, more than 3879 BTC in Ishii’s wallet were all seized by the FBI on December 1. The Metropolitan Police Department of Tokyo also arrested Ishii and charged him with acquiring $154 million in illicit money transactions from mid-May.
The US government then has launched legal proceedings to seize and return over 3879 Bitcoins to Sony Life Insurance Company Ltd.