Refund fraud: BKA searches suspects’ homes


The Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) searched the objects of seven men who are suspected of having been involved in the refund fraud of the “German Refund Crew”. The men between the ages of 20 and 37 are accused of, among other things, gang and commercial computer fraud and data theft.

C’t came across the “German Refund Crew” in mid-2020 and did some research there. At the end of October 2020, the BKA closed the Telegram group through which it had offered its fraudulent services. The main suspect’s home was searched, and further investigations led law enforcement agencies to track down the seven men.

In the case of refund or refund fraud, the perpetrators order goods on the Internet and then fake a return in order to get the payment amount reimbursed. The accused demanded a commission of 23 to 27 percent of the respective value of the goods for their criminal services. You are now facing imprisonment from 6 months to 10 years.

During the searches these days in Brandenburg, Baden-Württemberg, North Rhine-Westphalia and Rhineland-Palatinate, numerous smartphones and other digital evidence, fraudulently obtained goods as well as cash and crypto currencies were seized. In addition, the BKA was able to take over and secure six Telegram accounts.

According to the investigating senior public prosecutor Thomas Goger, not only the members but also hundreds of customers were investigated. In total, it is about 600 acts that were committed over a period of four months and caused damage of 500,000 euros.


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