Daily fraud update: 27th April

Chris Lee

Key OneCoin sentencing postponed again

A man convicted of participating in money laundering relating to the massive OneCoin crypto scam has had his sentencing pushed back.

Mark Scott, who formerly served as a partner at the legal firm Locke Lord LLP, has had his sentencing postponed until the 14th of July of this year.

This request was granted by Judge Edgardo Ramos, the justice in charge of the case, following a plea from Scott to the court – one of several made since the case began.

Scott was convicted in November of 2019 for his role in the scam, which involved money laundering to the tune of around $400m.

It is understood that the reason for the most recent postponement is so that Scott can have medical tests carried out.

The case has had a number of twists and turns so far.

Scott made extensive claims which he said demonstrated his innocence.

He argued, for example, that the jury in his trial was wrongly instructed and that false information was used.

The US government, which is bringing the case, has refuted this.

Yet, this is not the first time that Scott’s sentencing in particular has been postponed.

It was postponed in February of this year and was due to take place towards the end of May.

Coronavirus domain name seized after alleged Bitcoin link

Police in the United States have seized a domain name related to the coronavirus pandemic over claims that it had been linked to Bitcoin and scams.

The domain “coronaprevention.org” was seized by Homeland Security Investigations in conjunction with the Department of Justice, a message on the site said.

It is understood that the domain name was offered for sale on a website designed for internet hackers, and that it was described as a place to sell “high markup in-demand products”.

The person selling the domain name then asked for payment for it to be made in Bitcoin, media in the US reported.

The seller then allegedly went on to claim to an undercover officer that the site could be used for selling “fake testing kits”.

According to William S. Walker, who serves as the acting HSI Philadelphia special agent in charge, his organisation would fight against any fraudsters located during the pandemic.

“Sadly, criminals are using the current pandemic as an opportunity to generate proceeds while so many Americans are suffering”, he said in a statement released to the press.

“Homeland Security Investigations and our partners will continue to aggressively pursue those who attempt to illegally capitalize on this crisis through illicit money-making schemes”, he added.

US Attorney Tim Shea added that “exploitation” of coronavirus would not be tolerated.

“We will not tolerate exploitation of this national emergency for personal gain”, he said.

“This office will not allow fraudsters to use anonymous online spaces and cryptocurrency to hide their harmful activities and prey on victims”, he added.

Chris Lee

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