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Former Celsius executive pleads guilty in U.S. probe

Former Celsius executive pleads guilty in U.S. probe

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TL;DR

  • Roni Cohen-Pavon, ex-chief revenue officer of the Celsius Network, pleads guilty to four charges, including manipulating the Cel token’s price.
  • Cohen-Pavon agrees to assist the U.S. Attorney’s office and the FBI in their investigations.
  • Celsius founder, Alex Mashinsky, is also accused of artificially inflating the Cel token’s value; he has pleaded not guilty.

When it comes to the dynamic and unpredictable world of cryptocurrency, Roni Cohen-Pavon’s recent guilty plea reveals the perilous terrain of the crypto industry. Serving as the former chief revenue officer of the once-celebrated, but now defunct, cryptocurrency lender, Celsius Network, Cohen-Pavon’s fall from grace has sent ripples through the industry.

Cohen-Pavon’s Admission and Future Collaborations

In the heart of Manhattan, before the watchful eyes of U.S. District Judge John Koeltl, Cohen-Pavon came clean, admitting to not one, but four charges linked to Celsius.

One of the major bombshells from the hearing was the revelation that he manipulated the price of the Celsius crypto token, known as Cel.

It’s not just about admitting guilt; the former executive has also extended his hand to assist the U.S. Attorney’s office in Manhattan and the FBI in their ongoing investigations. The depth of his involvement is such that he’s also committed to taking the stand in court if needed.

This is not just the tale of one man’s misdemeanors. Celsius’s founder, Alex Mashinsky, is neck-deep in the controversy too. Both he and Cohen-Pavon were accused of artificially jacking up Cel’s value, only to cash out their personal holdings just before the crash and burn of Celsius in July 2022.

It’s alleged that Mashinsky pocketed a cool $42 million from his dealings, but unlike Cohen-Pavon, he’s challenging the allegations, having pleaded not guilty.

While Cohen-Pavon’s legal team and representatives from the U.S. Attorney’s office remain tight-lipped, refusing to comment, it’s crystal clear that the Celsius debacle paints a grim picture of crypto market manipulation.

The Meteoric Rise and Abrupt Fall of Crypto Lenders

The allure of cryptocurrency is undeniable. During the throes of the COVID-19 pandemic, as the world grappled with economic upheavals, crypto prices soared to the heavens.

Companies like Celsius tapped into this frenzy, promising easy loans and staggeringly high interest rates to their depositors. Their business model was straightforward: offer tokens to institutional investors and pocket the profit margin.

But as the saying goes, “Pride comes before a fall.” The rapid plunge in cryptocurrency prices triggered an avalanche of customer withdrawals, and Celsius crumbled.

The demise of Celsius is not an isolated incident. Several other crypto giants have faced bankruptcy. It’s a stark reminder of the volatile nature of the crypto realm, with even big players like the FTX exchange bearing the brunt of this volatility.

As we inch closer to the trial of FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, the Celsius case serves as a stark warning. While Cohen-Pavon will have to wait until December 11, 2024, for his final sentencing, there’s a possibility that his cooperation with the investigators might influence the outcome. One can’t help but wonder: Is this the wake-up call the crypto industry needs?

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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Jai Hamid

Jai Hamid is a passionate writer with a keen interest in blockchain technology, the global economy, and literature. She dedicates most of her time to exploring the transformative potential of crypto and the dynamics of worldwide economic trends.

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