Bulgarian OneCoin co-founder pleads guilty to participating in the international fraud scheme.
Karl Sebastian Greenwood, a co-founder and operator of a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme OneCoin, has pleaded guilty to multiple federal US charges.
According to the press release shared by the United States Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of New York, the man was found guilty in Manhattan federal court for committing wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy.
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In the report, the Department of Justice (DOJ) stated that OneCoin started operating in 2014 in Sofia, Bulgaria. The company had reportedly sold “a fraudulent cryptocurrency,” dubbed OneCoin. In its advertisement campaigns, Greenwood and OneCoin co-founder Ruja Ignatova, known as “the Cryptoqueen,” stated that the OneCoin token will be the “Bitcoin killer.”
However, the truth was completely different. The DOJ found that the OneCoin token was essentially worthless, as it has never been minted or based on the blockchain. The scammers were reportedly adjusting the price of the token manually.
The DOJ believes that during the time of operations, OneCoin managed to lure over four billion dollars from three million customers worldwide, with Greenwood earning around $21.2 million per month.
It is worth noting that Greenwood’s partner Ruja Ignatova has been hiding from the public eye since 2017. The woman is wanted by INTERPOL, the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and Europol. The FBI is offering $100,000 for valuable information about the location of Ignatova.
In the press release, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, Damian Williams, stated:
This guilty plea by the co-founder of OneCoin caps a week at SDNY that sends a clear message that we are coming after all those who seek to exploit the cryptocurrency ecosystem through fraud, no matter how big or sophisticated you are.
It can be assumed that the latter message is directed to Sam Bankman-Fried and his attorneys. The former CEO of now-bankrupt crypto exchange FTX was arrested on December 12th by the Royal Bahamas Police Force.