Disgraced “Queen of Crypto” Ruja Ignatova the time of flight may be coming to an end.
Ignatova, 42 years old, German citizen born in Bulgaria, is a former crypto pioneer who disappeared in October 2017 after promising high returns on its OneCoin crypto token worth $4 billion. Ponzi scheme. She now faces multiple fraud charges and has been on the run from the FBI for five years.
Although she has not been seen since her disappearance, a new London apartment listing suggests she is alive and evading arrest.
Ignatova, the only woman on the FBI’s most wanted list, was recently linked to an £11 million ($13.6 million) case. penthouse apartment for sale in Kensington, England, thanks to a new rule change by the UK’s Companies House, which acts similarly to the US Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.
The rule now requires that properties purchased by companies also list a beneficiary, and although Ignatova is believed to have initially purchased the home through a shell company, a new court filing with financial regulators in the UK lists Ignatova as the ‘beneficial owner’ of the property – inadvertently revealing its whereabouts.
Ignatova’s connection to the house was first spotted by the host of “The missing Cryptoqueen“Podcast, Jamie Bartlett.
“(The document) suggests that she is still alive, and there are documents somewhere that contain vital clues to her recent whereabouts,” Bartlett said. iNews.
Since Ignatova’s connection to the house, which was listed on real estate site Knight Frank, was confirmed, the listing has been removed.
Here’s what you need to know about the disgraced “Crypto Queen.”
Who is Ruja Ignatova?
Before Ruja Ignatova became one of 11 women on the FBI’s most wanted list in its 72-year history, she was considered a rising star in the crypto industry.
Ignatova was known for loving glitz and glamour, according to CNN, and was revered for her rise from humble beginnings in Germany to success as a crypto consultant and then entrepreneur.
Along with business partner Sebastian Greenwood, the couple convinced investors to back their OneCoin crypto token which they believed would be more valuable than Bitcoin. However, the authorities noted that OneCoin defrauded investors out of $4 billion in one of the largest international fraud schemes of all time.
“The OneCoins were completely worthless…(Their) lies were designed for one purpose, to trick ordinary people around the world into parting with their hard-earned money,” US prosecutors said, according to court documents.
Additionally, court documents reveal that Ignatova and Greenwood intended to deceive their clients from the start, by calling their own token a “trash coin” and discussing an exit strategy in private emails.
Their project imploded in 2016 when investors struggled to sell their OneCoins to recoup their investments, alerting the media and investigators to look into the company.
Then, in October 2017, the U.S. Department of Justice indicted Ignatova on one count of wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, securities fraud, conspiracy to commit fraud in securities and conspiracy to commit money laundering, with a federal judge issuing a warrant for her arrest. Stop, court documents State.
But Ignatova fled on a flight from Sofia, Bulgaria, to Athens, Greece, just two weeks after the arrest warrant was issued and she has not been seen since.
The FBI has offered a $100,000 reward to obtain information leading to his arrest. Additionally, they said: “Ignatova is believed to have been traveling with armed guards and/or associates. Ignatova may have had plastic surgery or otherwise altered her appearance. »
THE #FBI named Ruja Ignatova to its list of ten most wanted fugitives. She is wanted for her alleged participation in a large-scale fraud scheme involving cryptocurrency. Up to $100,000 reward offered for information leading to his arrest: https://t.co/oU7EKYqaCi pic.twitter.com/tJ8co8aqx0
– FBI Most Wanted (@FBIMostWanted) June 30, 2022
What happened to OneCoin?
Ruja Ignatova and her co-founder attracted people to their OneCoin program starting in 2014 by promising investors around the world a five to ten times return on investment.
Taking advantage of the crypto frenzy at the time, investors gave them $4 billion between 2014 and 2016. However, OneCoin’s value was manipulated by the company and it was never mined like other cryptocurrencies. currencies, although she told investors otherwise, according to CNN.
Once regulators discovered the scheme and Ignatova disappeared, she left her partners to deal with the fallout.
Co-founder Sebastian Greenwood was arrested in July 2018. He is currently in prison after pleading guilty to wire fraud, conspiracy to commit wire fraud, and conspiracy to commit money laundering. He is expected to be sentenced in April.
Ignatova’s brother, Konstantin Ignatov, who was also part of the business scheme, was arrested in March 2019 and is expected to be sentenced in February after pleading guilty to wire fraud conspiracy, money laundering and fraud.
Since the scandal broke, OneCoin has been shut down and its website is no longer active.
What is Ruja Ignatova’s net worth?
A lawsuit filed by victims against OneCoin revealed that Ignatova had $500 million in bank accounts in Dubai in 2021, according to a report from Financial results. It’s unclear how much crypto she holds, but the outlet discovered that she was paid 230,000 Bitcoins by a member of the Emirati royal family in 2015.