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Onecoin still operating in Bulgaria, Ponzi scheme victims say

Onecoin

TL;DR Breakdown

  • Onecoin Ponzi scheme victims speak up against the Bulgarian government for entertaining their perpetrators.
  • The victims demand seizure of assets from involved parties and compensation for the incident.

Onecoin Ponzi scheme victims recently filed a petition against the Bulgarian government on November 16 against the Bulgarian government. The involved parties leveraged the help of a UK-based attorney, Dr. Jonathan Levy, to express their frustrations with its authorities. According to the petition, the government failed to recognize the Ponzi scheme victims and entertained the perpetrators’ actions up to date in the country.

Onecoin stands as one of the hugest Ponzi schemes in crypto’s history, worth over 20 million Euros in scammed crypto. The scam operation had run since 2014 before the Bulgarian authorities raided its headquarters in Sofia. However, the victims accuse the Bulgarian government of turning a blind eye to the noticeable bad actors.

The petition reveals that its founders are still running in Sofia and never seized the stolen cryptos. It also states that the Ponzi scheme uses different names in Bulgaria and deals with local and offshore bank accounts to cover their tracks. It suggests that this move is further efficient for the Ponzi scheme orchestrators to unhinge any remaining whistleblowers.

Understanding the Onecoin Ponzi scheme

Ruga Ignatova is one of the core founders of the widely-known Onecoin pyramid scheme, with the help of Sebastian Greenwood and Konstantin Ignatov. The centralized platform offered custodial services for crypto investors, offering them unprecedented security. Moreover, its services spread globally, with different teams working in various cities.

However, authorities, including the FBI, started suspecting the company for misdoings in 2017. Not only did it stand as a pyramid scheme, but also a money-laundering operation. While Mr. Ignatov was arrested during the raid, Ruga, dubbed the self-made crypto queen, disappeared. 

His cooperation with authorities has been helpful with the case, testifying against his sister and the company. He is currently under witness protection considering the actions Onecoin took to cease investigation on its operations. Now, authorities worldwide classify it as illegal cooperation, banning its activities and seizing assets in their countries.

Investors suffered millions in losses cumulatively, with some undergoing assault for testifying against the company. The petition lays out several victims, including some of the team members, who received threats or worse to keep them silent concerning the matter.

Attorney Levy believes that the claims put forth by victims are enough for the Bulgarian government to take notice. He also states that this delayed action is uncalled for as all evidence points to the existence of the pyramid scheme and several additional illicit activities. 

Demanding justice

The Onecoin victims cannot wrap their heads around Bulgaria’s reluctance to implement actions against the organization. It is still moving millions of dollars between Bulgarian and Dubai-based banks without any efforts from the government. Attorney Levy expresses that Bulgarian authorities have not disclosed any information concerning arrests or asset seizures since 2018. 

He also states that the government seems oblivious to the cries of victims who suffered severally under Onecoin’s associates. He demands that the government exercise due diligence to the victims as stated under the European Union’s laws. Moreover, the victims require the total seizure of assets under Ruga and her associates within and outside the country.

Attorney Levy states in the petition that the government should find ways to compensate the victims fully for the damage caused during the pyramid scheme. While it is unclear what the Bulgarian government will do, the victims hope to get justice and make the bad actors pay for their crimes.
All the same, Onecoin serves as a reason why investors should do their research into projects before investing. Additionally, it is an eye-opener for regulatory authorities to ensure investor safety and the seamless progression of the growing crypto industry.

Edith Muthoni

Edith Muthoni

Edith is an investment writer, trader, and personal finance coach specializing in investments advice around the fintech niche. Her fields of expertise include stocks, cryptocurrencies, blockchain, and cryptocurrency investments.

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