Erin West, Deputy District Attorney of California’s Santa Clara County, has heard firsthand tales of scammers preying on victims for hundreds of thousands of dollars. She joins the show to explain the scamming technique known as “pig butchering,” how it is estimated to have raked in tens of billions worldwide, and why it has led to suicide in some cases. West makes the case for why victims need empathy and how law enforcement is working with exchanges to claw back scammed funds.

Show highlights:

  • Erin’s background and how she started investigating crypto crimes
  • what exactly the “pig butchering” method entails — and why it’s called that
  • what kind of people scammers are targeting
  • the devastating stories that have arisen from these crypto scams
  • fresh intel on where the fraudsters are located
  • whether the scammers may be connected to foreign governments
  • how the victims are often turned away by U.S. law enforcement agencies
  • how Erin’s agency was able to return almost $1 million to victims late last year
  • what local agencies can do to address these problems
  • how law enforcement agencies around the U.S. are lacking crypto education
  • the workshops Erin has been leading to help such agencies get educated
  • the relatively low number of NFT-related scams her agency has dealt with so far
  • what Erin recommends for victims of “pig butchering” scams

Thank you to our sponsors!




SIM Swaps and Pig Butchering scams: 


Forbes: Hackers Have Stolen Millions Of Dollars In Bitcoin — Using Only Phone Numbers

WIRED: What Is a Pig Butchering Scam?


Podcast on Indian telemarketing scams: Chameleon: Scam Likely — Campside Media





Read the episode transcript here