Ruja Ignatova, the mastermind of the infamous Onecoin pyramid, is now one of Europe’s most wanted fugitives. Also known as the “Crypto Queen,” it disappeared nearly five years ago, after a Ponzi-led scheme raised billions of dollars from fraudulent investors around the world.
Europol seeks information on the whereabouts of the inventor of Onecoin
The European Union’s law enforcement cooperation agency, Europol, is now offering a reward of up to 5,000 euros ($5,200) for any information that could lead to the arrest of Ruja Ignatova, the suspected mastermind of one of the biggest scams in crypto history, Onecoin.
The ad describes Ignatova, PhD, as “the driving force and intellectual inventor of the purported cryptocurrency Onecoin.” It is suspected of inducing investors around the world to invest money in “this ‘currency’ which is actually worthless,” Europol notes.
The agency also notes that fraud-related losses for Ponzi schemes created so far are in the double-digit million range, while also acknowledging that the total damage caused on a global scale is likely to be in the multi-billion mark. American dollar. Europol explains:
The whereabouts of the wanted person is unknown since October 25, 2017, and she has not appeared in public since this date, neither in relation to OneCoin nor otherwise.
Ignatova was accused of committing “fraud, including fraud affecting the financial interests of the European Communities within the meaning of the Agreement of 26 July 1995.” The promised reward is only for individuals who provide important information about its location and not to officials prosecuting criminal offenses.
Crypto Queen has been added to Europe’s most wanted list at the initiative of German law enforcement authorities. According to an announcement made by the police in the western German province of North Rhine-Westphalia, a reward of 5,000 euros was offered by the Prosecutor’s Office in Bielefeld.
Onecoin was launched by Bulgarian-born German citizen Ruja Ignatova in 2014. The cryptocurrency for the project was advertised as a “Bitcoin Killer” and was promoted by Bulgaria-based offshore entities, Onecoin Ltd. , registered in Dubai, and Onelife Network Ltd. Both were founded by Ignatova and her partner Sebastian Greenwood, now imprisoned in the United States
Roja’s brother, Konstantin Ignatov, who is also one of the founders of Onecoin, was arrested in Los Angeles in 2019 and accused of financial crimes. He has since begun cooperating with investigators working on the case, testifying about Onecoin’s links to organized crime, pleading guilty, and requesting witness protection.
In November, a lawyer representing investors urged Bulgaria to act in the case, claiming that the scam was still operating from the country. In a petition with the Bulgarian Ombudsman, Jonathan Levy accused the officials of failing to provide justice to the victims. It also alleged that Ignatovs and Onecoin entities still control property, crypto assets and fiat money in excess of €12.5 billion (over $13 billion).
Do you think European law enforcement authorities will succeed in locating Onecoin founder Ruja Ignatova? Tell us in the comments section below.
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