Onecoin is a crypto-scam launched in 2014, on the radar of all the world's fonts after successfully extorting nearly $4 billion since its inception. According to the recent hearings of the co-founder of the scam, indicted in the United States and facing 90 years in prison, George W Bush's brother met Ruja Ignatova, the boss of Onecoin.
Mark Scott, a former Locke Lord lawyer, is on trial in the United States for his involvement in the Onecoin scam, orchestrated by the "Cryptoqueen" Ruja Ignatova and his brother Konstantin Ignatov. Currently, on the run, Ruja Ignatova is accused of money laundering, as well as aggravated fraud. His brother was recently arrested by American authorities and faces 90 years in prison.
On the bench of the accused, Mark Scott took slightly for his rank, according to the charges brought against him. He is thus tried for having participated in the $400 million laundering, allowing him to lead the way and to offer himself some gifts to enhance his daily life. Purchase of a yacht of 20 meters long, multiple villas on the coast and luxury cars would have been badly acquired by the interested, as per Bloomberg.
Scott denied the charges against him, claiming he was unaware of the illegality of the case. A position that will raise more than one eyebrow, but his lawyer, David Garvin, firmly defended, it would be the alleged involvement of Neil Bush â the brother of former President George W. Bush â in Onecoin that would have misled him.
According to the BBC, Ignatov signed a deal with the US authorities on 4 October 2019. Prosecutors have not, however, abandoned the prosecution of money laundering and fraud. In exchange for his cooperation, Ignatov will escape other criminal charges related to the scam. They could even have a witness protection programâ in the hypothesis he would not end up behind bars for the other charges still held against him.
Konstantin Ignatov allegedly revealed in his testimony details of the disappearance of his sister, Ruja Ignatova, implying that she too had deceived him. The latter gradually worried about the growing risk of seeing one of her relatives and report her to the FBI. He also stated that she would be in possession of several passports and had probably passed through Vienna and Athens since the beginning of her run.
The US justice continues its relentless pursuit of the mysterious "Cryptoqueen" Ruja Ignatova. Mark Scott's lawyer explained in details that Scott would have known that Neil Bush had to meet with Ruja Ignatova to talk about Onecoin, which had legitimized the project in his eyes.
"It's not just that [Mr. Scott saw] Mr. Bush's name once (...). The government has [since] questioned Mr Bush twice [about this meeting]," as stated by Garvin.
Indeed, Neil Bush had already been heard by the FBI about his connection to this case. Due to his contacts with the board of directors of Hoifu Energy, a company owned by Chinese businessman Hui Chi Ming, he would have met Mrs Ignatova. In summary, it would be a grim $60 million deal related to an African oil development, mainly settled at the time in Onecoin.
Asked about the meeting between Bush, Ming and Ignatova, David Garvin stated that it had indeed taken place and that the son of the former president would have been paid $300,000 to attend.
"Bush recalled that the head of Hoifu Energy, Dr Hui Chi Ming, received a bunch of cryptocurrencies for an oil deal in Madagascar. Bush had [then] a residual interest in this cryptocurrency. Bush met Onecoin Company Woman Ruja Ignatova in Hong Kong with Dr Hui," a transcript of an FBI report read as reported by the coinrivet.com
However, the deal in question finally fell through, and Neil Bush was never interested in the Onecoin project or cryptocurrencies again. On the strength of this information, the judge considered that Neil Bush's involvement was, in fact, irrelevant to the Mark Scott case.
Investigations into Onecoin will only end when Ruja Ignatova is arrested. In the meantime, and as these various facts illustrate well, the sprawling organization has forged many links, sometimes quite astonishing.