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Clients launch legal action after Brazil's Bitcoin Banco freezes accounts

Bitcoin Banco Cryptocurrency is facing mounting judicial pressure after having blocked its customers from their accounts for more than two months in the wake of an alleged fraud, Valor Economico reported.

Clients from the Curitiba-based bank, which owns cryptocurrency exchanges, have not been able to withdraw or transfer funds either in Brazilian reais or in cryptoassets.

The company, known as Grupo Bitcoin Banco, has been hit by roughly 100 lawsuits for a total value that exceeds 70 million reais, a lawyer who represents two family groups affected reportedly said.

A company spokesman said Bitcoin Banco is seeking another 30 days to resolve the issue, admitting that withdrawals would be restricted during that time. The group said it suffered from a 50 million reais fraud.

The company has 400,000 registered clients, 50,000 of which are active, according to the publication.

As of Aug. 12, US$1 was equivalent to 3.99 Brazilian reais.