Lawyer Who Laundered Onecoin Money Denied New Trial – A U.S. judge has denied a lawyer’s request for a new trial after he laundered $400 million from the Onecoin cryptocurrency pyramid scheme. This decision paves the way for the sentencing of 54-year-old Mark Scott, even though a crucial prosecution witness admitted to giving false testimony in court.
The judge remains unconvinced of the lawyer’s innocence, despite the witness’s lies, in the case involving the lawyer who assisted in money laundering for the infamous Onecoin crypto Ponzi scheme, which was orchestrated by Konstantin, the brother of Onecoin’s mastermind, “Cryptoqueen” Ruja Ignatova.
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Prosecutors alleged that Mark Scott generated $50 million by establishing a fraudulent investment fund, which was utilized to handle funds extracted from the Onecoin scam. Ruja Ignatova, who remains wanted by the FBI, Interpol, and Europol, benefited from this fund, and the scam itself amassed $4 billion through deceitful investments worldwide.
Scott, a former partner at Locke Lord, was convicted in November 2019, as noted in a Bloomberg report. He used the proceeds to finance a luxurious lifestyle, including the acquisition of extravagant properties in Cape Cod, Massachusetts, high-end goods, luxury cars, and even a substantial yacht.
On Monday, U.S. District Judge Edgardo Ramos rejected his plea for a new trial, asserting his skepticism that “an innocent person could have been wrongfully convicted,” despite the false testimony provided by Konstantin Ignatov, one of Onecoin’s co-founders, during the trial. Four years ago, Konstantin, who assisted Ruja Ignatova in perpetrating the fraud, was apprehended in Los Angeles.
He subsequently pleaded guilty to charges linked to Onecoin, requested witness protection in the United States, and consented to testify against Mark Scott. Scott’s defense team pursued a new trial, citing alleged legal errors from the initial trial and presenting evidence of Ignatov providing false testimony. Judge Ramos acknowledged that prosecutors did not contest the fact that Ignatov had lied about specific matters.
His ruling now paves the way for Scott to be sentenced. “We are disappointed that the court did not grant a new trial given the undisputed evidence that the Government’s sole cooperating witness perjured himself,” Scott’s lawyer, Arlo Devlin-Brown, said in a statement, adding that his client intends to appeal the ruling.
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Onecoin enticed individuals by presenting an opportunity to invest in a counterfeit cryptocurrency bearing the same name, initially promoted as the “Bitcoin killer.” This venture commenced in 2014 and functioned as a multi-level marketing scheme. Ruja Ignatova’s whereabouts have remained unknown since 2017, and she is still missing. Furthermore, Onecoin’s co-founder, Karl Sebastian Greenwood, was recently handed a 20-year prison sentence in the United States.