Mehmet Yağız “cNed” İpek, a professional VALORANT player currently playing for Acend, has admitted on stream that he was involved in the money laundering scandal sweeping the Turkish esports scene currently. The scandal involves people using stolen credit cards to donate large amounts of bits to streamers, after which streamers would split the money with the donators.
Several Turkish VALORANT pros have been implicated in the scandal and are being investigated by Riot Games. Turkish team BBL Esports has parted ways with players and content creators connected to the scandal.
CNed is a high-profile Turkish player who rose to international prominence following VALORANT Stage 3 Masters Berlin. His brother, Alihan “deNc” İpek, has also admitted his involvement in the scandal. CNed took to his Twitch stream Monday to clarify his own involvement in the situation. According to cNed, he never had direct communication with the person orchestrating the scandal, but was instead connected via his brother.
“To be honest I don’t really have a statement to make about the topic because I’ve not even once messaged the bit-dude, he did not reach out to me [directly] once,” cNed said on stream as Upcomer confirmed with a translator. “He talked with my older brother… That guy sent me the bits, the bits transferred to me. I didn’t report those bits to Twitch, I acknowledge that. I didn’t report to Twitch and took the money. I repeat once again, the guy did not contact me. I acknowledge that even though I did not intend to, technically I got involved in this, unfortunately.”
CNed also confirmed that one of the tactics the perpetrator used to force streamers to split the money was threatening to donate so many bits that Twitch would shut their channel down permanently and take away all the revenue, something that he claimed to have seen happen to a friend.
Acend qualified for VALORANT Champions earlier this year, with cNed playing a key role in their success. There is no information yet on whether this scandal will affect his standing with the team.
As reported by Jake Lucky, people became aware of the situation after Twitch was hacked and payout information was leaked, revealing several small streamers had made “absurd amounts of money from bits.” Since then, several professional VALORANT players have come forward about being involved in the scandal.
A MASSIVE Twitch scandal is ongoing in the Turkish scene involving dozens of esports players and streamers money laundering through bit donations
After Twitch’s massive payout leak, people noticed several smaller streamers making absurd amounts of money from bits (1/2)
— Jake Lucky (@JakeSucky) October 30, 2021
One player spoke to Upcomer anonymously about how they were caught up in the scandal, alleging that they were brought into the fold under the belief that the money had all been acquired legally. Other players who have admitted involvement, such as Semih “LEGOO” Selvi, have also claimed that they believed it all to be legal.
This is a developing story that will be updated as more information becomes available.
— Bonnie Qu and Declan McLaughlin contributed to this report