The judge of the TJ-SP (São Paulo Court of Justice) Ivana David Bariero said today, in an interview with UOL News, that money stolen by criminals through the Pix instant payment system is “very rare to recover” due to the difficulty of tracking these amounts that are transferred to orange bank accounts in digital banks.
According to the magistrate, “the cases of victims who manage to recover the money are very rare”, since, when the police try to trace the path taken by the stolen money, it is as if the account did not exist. She points out that it is for this reason that the Central Bank has determined the reimbursement of the stolen value.
In the interview, the judge highlighted that it is important for people who use Pix to follow the three steps recommended by BC: 1) Decrease the transfer limit; 2) notify the institution of the effective transfer and 3) carry out the police report because by registering BO it helps security officers to have knowledge in relation to the areas most targeted by criminals to increase patrolling in the region, in addition to the fact that the report is necessary for demand reimbursement from financial institutions.
Criminals organized very quickly, judge says
No UOL News, Ivana David Bariero highlighted that Pix emerged with the purpose of facilitating financial transactions, especially during the coronavirus pandemic period, but thieves managed to organize themselves very quickly and Pix ended up becoming a tool in the hands of criminals. Still, she points out that it is possible to make a correlation with the system of a criminal organization.
The magistrate said that investigations indicated that these criminal organizations are organized by “cells”. The first part is responsible for walking around the neighborhoods and checking the behavior of potential victims. Another cell is responsible for approaching the victim and carrying out the theft, while a third “acts through digital accounts in the names of oranges”. Once the transactions are made, “the money will quickly end up in the hands of criminality”.
Bariero emphasizes that this is not “a simplistic crime” and that “there is a whole structure, an association”. She says that the way criminals act is to approach people on public roads, usually with the use of a weapon and the threat of death. With the victim surrendered, he opens the electronic device, checks if the person is using Pix. Once the victim is confirmed to use this system, the criminal informs the account so that the transfer of the amount can occur “and immediately that money is transferred, in a liquidity that makes it difficult to recover the stolen amount”.
SP Justice Convicted Pix Gangs
The São Paulo Court began to apply the first convictions of members of the “gangs of the Pix”, as the criminal groups that commit cell phone kidnapping and theft are called to demand bank passwords and electronically and instantly transfer the maximum amount of money from the accounts chains of victims.
Just last Friday (17), judges ordered four convictions of perpetrators of this type of offense in criminal courts in the capital, at the Barra Funda Forum, in the west of São Paulo. The sentences imposed on the defendants ranged from ten years to 46 years of imprisonment in a closed regime.
Attacks on victims are typified by the Civil Police as robbery, extortion and also as a criminal association, when more than three criminals act together.
Bank payments via Pix were launched in October of last year and operation began the following month. Faced with a series of scams applied using the system, the Procon-SP (Consumer Protection and Defense Program) asked the Central Bank that the values of the movements be limited to R$ 500 per month as a security measure. The Central Bank is against the proposal.