Will the Mastermind Behind the Scam Get Caught?
The founders behind the OneCoin scam have tried to evade authorities since roughly 2017, after their Ponzi-like scam collapsed. It was founded and managed by Ruja Ignatova, Sebastian Greenwood, and Konstantin Ignatov. It has been estimated by U.S. authorities that the Ponzi scam managed to bring in the equivalent of $4 billion worldwide.
Sebastian Greenwood was apprehended by Thai authorities in 2018 and later extradited to the United States. Konstantin Ignatov was apprehended slightly later in 2019 in Los Angeles by FBI agents. Only Ignatov's sister, Ruja Ignatova also sometimes called the "crypto queen" managed to evade the long arm of the law.
Earlier today, some of the funds raised by OneCoin in Bitcoin have been on the move. 11,999 BTC or the current equivalent of $117 million has moved from one wallet associated with OneCoin to a new wallet. The founder of Primitive Ventures and notable cryptocurrency influencer Dovey Wan made note of this earlier.
Tracking the movement of OneCoin's Bitcoin could bring authorities one step closer to Ignatova. It has been speculated by the BBC in their podcast series "The Missing Cryptoqueen" that she is living under an assumed name in Frankfurt, Germany. Should any of the Bitcoin be transferred to an exchange for liquidation, it could put Ignatova within Interpol's grasp.
How Did OneCoin's Scam Operate?
OneCoin was one of the largest cryptocurrency scams ever to occur in the blockchain space. It has been compared to Bitconnect which had a similar Ponzi-like structure. Like Bitconnect, there were OneCoin mainly sold educational materials packages which would also contain "tokens" to mine OneCoins. The only exchange for OneCoin was their official exchange xcoinx. The exchange was only available to those who've purchased advanced educational packages and had daily sell limits which depended on which package was purchased.
The only OneCoin exchange, xcoinx was closed without notice in January 2017 making their cryptocurrency Onecoin valueless.
Written by Jonathan Ganor
Writer & cryptocurrency aficionado