Mark Scott Jailed for 10 Years For Laundering $400 Million in OneCoin Scam

Former attorney Mark Scott set up fake funds to launder $400 million for the OneCoin cryptocurrency fraud scheme - one of the biggest scams ever. He was sentenced to 10 years.

Key Insights

  • Mark Scott was sentenced to 10 years in prison for laundering around $400 million stolen from victims of the OneCoin cryptocurrency fraud scheme.
  • Scott helped set up fake private equity funds that disguised transfers of the stolen OneCoin funds and made the money appear to be legitimate investments.
  • Scott made over $50 million from the money laundering scheme which he used to fund a lavish lifestyle.

NEW YORKΒ (MarketsXplora) – A former partner at law firm Locke Lord LLP was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Friday for helping launder around $400 million stolen from victims of OneCoin, a fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme promoted as a rival to bitcoin.

Mark Scott was convicted in November 2019 on charges he helped hide OneCoin proceeds from U.S. authorities through a series of fake investment funds set up in the British Virgin Islands.

Prosecutors said Scott made more than $50 million from the scheme, using the money to fund a lavish lifestyle that included buying luxury cars, yachts and multimillion-dollar homes.

OneCoin was founded in 2014 in Bulgaria and billed as the next bitcoin, powered by blockchain. In reality, it had no real value and was never listed on any independent cryptocurrency exchange, prosecutors said.

Led by Ruja Ignatova, also known as the “cryptoqueen,” OneCoin defrauded victims out of an estimated $4 billion globally, making it one of the biggest scams ever, prosecutors said. Ignatova disappeared in late 2017 after OneCoin came under scrutiny from various authorities. Her brother and other associates have been charged for their roles.

Scott helped launder nearly $400 million of OneCoin funds from 2016 to 2018, prosecutors said, creating fake investment funds that disguised money transfers from Ignatova and others.

The money was used to buy property, jewelry, cars and yachts, items which Scott was ordered to forfeit. He was also ordered to forfeit some $392 million, representing funds that passed through bank accounts linked to the fake investment vehicles.

The case is U.S. v. Mark S. Scott, U.S. District Court, Southern District of New York, No. 17-cr-630.

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