As per the title - I paid for BTC in early 2014 and appear to be the victim of fraud. Are the coins lost forever? Any help is gratefully appreciated. I purchased them through quickbitcoin.co.uk, which no longer exists. I made a bank transfer to the purchaser at the time, and have their bank transfer details and wallet address. The BTC was apparently sent to me, and I was given transaction details, however these show that the BTC was 'sold' shortly after my bank transfer was made - I was not aware of this at the time of course. Having spoken to some 'scam recovery' solicitors in the UK, it seems that any transactions over 6 years old cannot be pursued. Can anyone help please - to either help gain clarity on what has happened, or to direct me to a bona fide international BTC fraud firm? Thanks very much in advance!
The BTC was apparently sent to me, and I was given transaction details, however these show that the BTC was 'sold' shortly after my bank transfer was made
When Bitcoin is sent to you it is sent to an address, the address likely started with a 1. In order to own that address you would also have needed a private key. If you have neither of those things there is probably no way anyone can assist.
sold NEVER appears on a blockchain explorer and only appears on exchange trading order books or transaction history. It would be helpful to see the supposed transaction details you were given. If the coins were sent to an address belonging to a private key that you own, no one would be able to move them. If on the other hand you never custodied your own coins, there is no way to know where they are. You can attempt to investigate fraud if you want at the control of your local law enforcement + chain analysis firms (I'm not sure which ones are good), but to the extent that you did not take the basic steps to self-custody it is unlikely anyone can help you here.
Tldr: If you do not have an address, private-key, mnemonic phrase, old working wallet software, it is unlikely anyone can help you recover this from the Bitcoin side of things. Please Read: https://www.swanbitcoin.com/assessing-risk-in-bitcoin-custody/