Ruja Ignatova, mastermind of the infamous Onecoin pyramid, is now one of Europe’s most wanted fugitives. Also known as the “Crypto Queen,” she disappeared nearly five years ago after the Ponzi scheme she ran raked in billions of dollars from betrayed investors around the world.
Europol is asking for information on the whereabouts of the Onecoin inventor
The European Union agency for law enforcement cooperation, Europol, is now offering a reward of up to €5,000 ($5,200) for any information that could lead to the arrest of Ruja Ignatova, suspected of being behind one of the biggest scams in crypto history, Onecoin.
That Notice describes the doctor of law Ignatova as “the driving force and intellectual inventor of the alleged cryptocurrency Onecoin”. It is suspected of enticing investors around the world to put money into “this actually worthless ‘currency’,” notes Europol.
The agency also points out that the Ponzi scheme’s fraud-related losses recorded so far are in the high tens of millions, but also acknowledges that the total damage caused worldwide is expected to be in the billions of US dollars. Europol explains:
The whereabouts of the wanted person are unknown as of October 25, 2017 and he has not made any public appearances in connection with OneCoin or otherwise since that date.
Ignatova is accused of “fraud, including fraud affecting the financial interests of the European Communities within the meaning of the Convention of 26 July 1995”. The promised reward is intended only for private individuals who provide crucial leads into their whereabouts, and not for criminal investigators.
The Crypto Queen was included in the Most Wanted list in Europe on the initiative of the German law enforcement authorities. According to an announcement released the North Rhine-Westphalian police, the 5,000 euro reward was suspended by the Bielefeld public prosecutor’s office.
Onecoin was launched in 2014 by Bulgarian-born German citizen Ruja Ignatova. The project’s cryptocurrency was promoted as a “bitcoin killer” and promoted by Bulgaria-based offshore companies Onecoin Ltd., registered in Dubai, and Belize-registered Onelife Network Ltd. Applied. Both were founded by Ignatova and her partner Sebastian Greenwood, now incarcerated in the US
Ruja’s brother Konstantin Ignatov, who is also a co-founder of Onecoin, was arrested in Los Angeles in 2019 and charged with financial crimes. He has since begun working with investigators working on the case, testifying about Onecoin’s links to organized crime, pleading guilty and applying for witness protection.
In November, a lawyer representing investors urged Bulgaria to intervene in the case, claiming that the scam was still operating out of the country. in one petition Along with the Bulgarian ombudsman, Jonathan Levy accused officials of not doing justice to the victims. He also claimed that the companies Ignatovs and Onecoin were still in control of over €14 billion (over $13 billion) in property, crypto assets and fiat funds.
Do you think European law enforcement will be able to track down Onecoin’s founder, Ruja Ignatova? Tell us in the comment section below.
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