On Saturday, Mark Karpeles, CEO of bankrupt bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox, which collapsed spectacularly last year, was arrested in Tokyo on suspicion of illicitly stealing $1 million from the online financial platform, the New York Times reports.
In a statement, the Tokyo Metropolitan Police said that they believed 30-year-old French national Karpeles had “unjustly inflated the balance” of an account in his name by manipulating Mt. Gox transaction records. “He created false information that $1 million had been transferred into the account, when in fact it had not been.”
Before it filed for bankruptcy in February last year, Mt. Gox said 850,000 Bitcoins, mostly belonging to its clients, had been either lost or stolen by hackers, an amount worth more than $450 million at the time. The company also said it had lost $27 million in cash.
It subsequently said it recovered 200,000 of the missing Bitcoins from an overlooked part of its computer systems. With its accounting in disarray, however, it said it could not be sure what happened to the rest, or even verify exactly how many Bitcoins it had actually held to begin with.
Unanswered questions abound. Where are the missing bitcoins? Who is the real Satoshi Nakamoto? What even is a bitcoin? We may never know.