(ECNS) -- At least 500 Chinese investors were victims of Hullcoin virtual currency fraud, involving investments totaling 7.1 million yuan ($1.1 million), with the chance of money being recovered slim, China National Radio (CNR) reports.
Police are still investigating the case.
Hullcoin is a virtual currency launched by Hull City Council in the United Kingdom during 2014. Some foreign media reports are also calling it "local digital cryptocurrency".
Many Chinese investors told CNR they had learned about the new wealth management product through reports by renowned media organizations last year, and through videos and introductions to its website.
A woman surnamed Li in central China's Hubei province told CNR she learned about Hullcoin from a friend last October. Her investment totaled more than 60,000 yuan. "Before I could withdraw (my money), the website had shut down," she explained.
The website Li referred to was Hullcoin China, an online platform where investors were told they would to be able to buy and trade the virtual currency.
The CNR report said Chinese investors like Li had learned about the national launch and promotion of Hullcoin through various channels since last November.
However, experts who have analyzed Hullcoin promotional videos have found all had been fabricated through technological means. Many of the photos about its China launch had also been photoshopped, it was added.
CNR sent reporters to Changsha, Hunan province, where it was said that a Hullcoin investment and financing promotion conference had been held, and found that was untrue as w ell.
A man surnamed Zhao told CNR his Hullcoin investment totaled in excess of 400,000 yuan and that he had also introduced the product to his friends and relatives.
He said they checked well-known Chinese websites including Baidu, Sohu, Sina and ifeng.com and believed Hullcoin could not be fabricated based on reports.
However, CNR found none of these reports were original or had credible sources, and some have since been removed from webpages. The Hullcoin China site had not been registered and its Hong Kong-based office address does not exist at all. Since December, users have been unable to log onto the site, it was said.