Co-founder of OneCoin and brother of ‘missing cryptoqueen,’ Konstantin Ignatov has admitted his role in the alleged crypto fraud. According to investigators’ allegations, OneCoin raised multi-billion dollars in a fraudulent scheme. Ignatov signed a plea deal document on October 4 and now faces up to 90 years in jail. The news broke on November 12.
Police arrested Ignatov at Los Angeles International Airport in March 2019. He pleaded guilty to several charges, such as money laundering and fraud.
OneCoin was founded in 2014 and is considered one of the major crypto exit scams alongside famous crypto scam BitConnect. According to investigators, it has allegedly raised 4.4 billion dollars (€4 billion) in a Ponzi scheme. However, The Bulgaria-based firm behind OneCoin remains operational and denies all wrongdoing.
By complying with the terms of the plea deal, Ignatov will reportedly not face further criminal charges for his role in OneCoin, other than any potential tax violations. The plea document says that Ignatov’s cooperation with the investigation might reveal activities of individuals who may use violence against OneCoin co-founder or his family. The document suggests he could apply to the US witness protection scheme and be assigned a new identity.
Ignatov’s testimony: Brother Against Sister
While testifying in the trial against Mark Scott, accused of laundering almost 400 million dollars via OneCoin, Ignatov’s testimony revealed some details regarding his sister. Dr. Ruja Ignatova also known as the ‘cryptoqueen’ is also a co-founder of OneCoin Ltd. During the trial, Ignatov told the court that his sister was living in Bulgaria before her disappearance. He confirmed that Ignatova thought critics of OneCoin were haters. According to Ignatov, ‘cryptoqueen’ was afraid somebody close to her was going to give her up to the FBI. He hired a private investigator to find the vanished ‘cryptoqueen,’ but it was unsuccessful, Ignatov said. According to the testimony, he has not spoken to Dr. Ignatova since she disappeared.