The co-founder of the crypto Onecoin has admitted his wrongdoing to federal fraud authorities in the United States. Karl Greenwood was being prosecuted for fraud, conspiracy and money laundering, among other things, for creating and promoting the Onecoin crypto that caused its users to lose more than 4 billion. The defendant faces up to 60 years in prison, U.S. authorities announced. His main collaborator Ruja Ignatova, nicknamed cryptoqueen, meanwhile, is still on the run. I am guilty finally recognizes Karl Greenwood.
Onecoin scam co-founder confesses
Karl Greenwood could spend the next sixty years of his life in prison. The 45-year-old Swedish-British citizen has admitted to the conspiracy, fraud and money laundering charges brought against him by the U.S. Attorney’s Office in the Southern District of New York. The charges against Karl Greenwood follow his involvement in the creation and promotion of Onecoin. Introduced in 2014 as a promising crypto by Karl Greenwood and Ruja Ignatova, Onecoin was actually a Ponzi scheme. It lost its 3 million users over $4 billion.
As founder and leader of OneCoin, Karl Sebastian Greenwood operated one of the largest international fraud schemes ever perpetrated. Greenwood and his co-conspirators defrauded unsuspecting victims.Damian Williams, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.
Karl Greenwood was arrested in Thailand in July 2018 at the request of US authorities. Three months later, Karl Greenwood was extradited to the United States. Since October 2018, he has been in custody in the US on charges of fraud, conspiracy and money laundering. His accomplice, co-founder of the OneCoin scam, Ruja Ignatova is still nowhere to be found. The so-called CryptoQueen was last seen in 2017 on a commercial flight from Sofia, Bulgaria to Athens, Greece. The fugitive Ruja Ignatova is among the ten most wanted people by the FBI. This American agency is even offering a $100,000 reward for information leading to her arrest.
This determination by the U.S. authorities reflects the scale of the OneCoin scam.
Onecoin, one of the first large-scale crypto scams
The history of OneCoin dates back to 2014. That year, Ruja Ignatova and Karl Greenwood founded the company OneCoin. Based in Bulgaria, OneCoin sets up the crypto of the same name. Dubbed the “Bitcoin Killer”, this crypto was intended to replace Bitcoin.
In reality, OneCoin was a crypto in name only. Karl Greenwood and Ruja Ignatova had just taken advantage of the lack of knowledge of the young blockchain technology to launch one of the biggest crypto scams. The premise of the scam was simple: every Onecoin purchased gave access to a training package. Each converted person could in turn attract new people. This way, they received a commission on the “training pack” sold. From 2014 to 2017, this Ponzi scheme managed to raise nearly $4 billion from more than 3 million investors.
As evidenced by emails published by the U.S. justice system, Karl Greenwood and Ruja Ignatova consciously knew that OneCoin was not serious. In an email from June 2014 during the development of the scam, Ruja Ignatova notably called Onecoin a “garbage coin” that she can’t even be proud of except with Karl Greenwood to make money. She even had an exit strategy for this scam. The strategy boiled down to taking money from investors she calls idiots, running and blaming someone else.
OneCoin is an example of how crypto is different from what its detractors say. As in all other economic sectors, it is not about making a lot of money easily and quickly. By dint of believing this false perception of crypto, many end up in the industry as scammers or scammed. Don’t be fooled, do some research to find out the usefulness of crypto beyond just financial gain.
I dream of a world where every citizen has total control over themselves, including their finances. I believe that Bitcoin is one of the tools that will achieve this revolution. Since 2019, I am learning about this cryptocurrency and spreading the word around.