Investors in Evolved Apes, a nonfungible token (NFT) project, are concerned about the project’s anonymous developer’s absence. Although, efforts are underway to apprehend the alleged culprit.
The developer, who goes by the alias “Evil Ape,” is accused of stealing 798 Ether (ETH) worth more than $2.7 million from the project’s funds.
The allegedly stolen monies included both the proceeds from the initial minting procedure and the ETH exchanged during the secondary sale of NFTs on the OpenSea marketplace.
Indeed, “Evolved Apes” was one of the most talked-about NFT mints recently, with the 10,000-piece collection apparently selling out in 10 minutes and the floor price continuously rising after the quick sale.
The project’s storefront on OpenSea, on the other hand, indicates a tanking floor price of 0.005 ETH, which is much less than the original minting cost. The recent rug pull scandal that is rocking the project is undoubtedly tied to the drop in floor pricing.
Evil Ape allegedly shut down the “Evolved Apes” Twitter account and website in addition to allegedly siphoning off all of the project’s funds.
Evil Ape and the project’s designers had promised to deploy a blockchain combat game before fleeing with the $2.7 million, a promise shared by numerous avatar-style NFT developers.
Under the banner of “Fight Back Apes,” a group of community members have banded together to continue the project’s development.
To avoid a repeat of the Evil Ape incident, the individuals behind the new faction claim they want to develop a more community-centric operating model for the project, including a multisig wallet.
Because Evil Ape continues to receive 4% royalties on secondary sales, the current idea is to develop a new project that will airdrop additional NFTs to existing holders.
In 2021, NFTs have undoubtedly dominated the crypto market, with major platforms like OpenSea posting massive trading volumes. Given the popularity of NFTs, it’s not unexpected that claimed rogue actors like Evil Ape try to defraud unwary consumers.