Lawyer who laundered $400M from OneCoin scam denied new trial: Report

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The lawyer respon­si­ble for laun­der­ing $400 mil­lion from the OneCoin fraud has been denied a motion seek­ing a new tri­al, despite a pros­e­cu­tion wit­ness hav­ing per­jured them­selves in the tri­al against him in 2019.

Accord­ing to a Sept. 18 report from Bloomberg, 54-year-old lawyer Mark Scott argued that he didn’t know OneCoin was a fraud­u­lent oper­a­tion at the time and should not be charged for his role in set­ting up the fund that laun­dered mon­ey for OneCoin founder Ruja “Cryp­to­queen” Ignatov. 

Scott was found guilty of mon­ey laun­der­ing and bank fraud con­spir­a­cy in Novem­ber 2019, with pros­e­cu­tors find­ing that Scott earned a total of $50 mil­lion through a fraud­u­lent fund that processed pay­ments and trans­ac­tions siphoned from the OneCoin scheme. 

His legal team has been seek­ing a new tri­al since, cit­ing a false tes­ti­mo­ny from a gov­ern­ment wit­ness in the orig­i­nal trial. 

How­ev­er, dur­ing a Sept. 18 hear­ing, Unit­ed States Dis­trict Judge Edgar­do Ramos denied the attor­neys’ request for a new tri­al, say­ing he was uncon­vinced that “an inno­cent per­son may have been con­vict­ed” despite the false tes­ti­mo­ny deliv­ered dur­ing the 2019 tri­al by Kon­stan­tin Ignatov. 

Kon­stan­tin Igna­tov was a gov­ern­ment wit­ness who admit­ted to aid­ing his sis­ter Ruja in the OneCoin fraud.

Lawyers for Scott said that they would appeal the deci­sion, claim­ing that his client was “dis­ap­point­ed that the court did not grant a new tri­al giv­en the undis­put­ed evi­dence that the Government’s sole coop­er­at­ing wit­ness per­jured himself.”

Relat­ed: OneCoin head of com­pli­ance fac­ing 40-year sen­tence after US extradition

OneCoin was launched in 2014, and mar­ket­ed itself as a cryp­tocur­ren­cy that was sim­i­lar in struc­ture to Bit­coin. How­ev­er, it was lat­er revealed to be a pyra­mid scheme that func­tioned by lur­ing in new users with fic­ti­tious claims and promis­es of high future earnings.

The pros­e­cu­tion claimed that Scott used the $50 mil­lion in pro­ceeds from OneCoin to finance an expen­sive lifestyle, buy­ing a swathe of lux­u­ry goods includ­ing numer­ous mul­ti­mil­lion-dol­lar homes, watch­es, sports cars and a 17 meter yacht.

On Sept. 12, Ramos sen­tenced OneCoin’s co-founder Karl Green­wood to 20 years in prison in the Unit­ed States, after he was found guilty of a litany of charges includ­ing fraud and mon­ey laundering. 

Ruja Igna­tov has not been seen since Octo­ber 2017 and is cur­rent­ly on the Fed­er­al Bureau of Investigation’s Ten Most Want­ed List.

Big Ques­tions: What’s with all the cryp­to deaths? 

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