Russian scammers have been charged for conducting a $340 million crypto Ponzi scheme.
U.S. prosecutors indicted the scammer group with conspiracy to conduct wire fraud for running the international Ponzi scheme that stole millions of dollars from unsuspecting investors.
The culprits could spend the next 20 years in prison.
U.S. prosecutors charge Russian scammer group with fraud
According to the United States Department of Justice, the crypto Ponzi scheme made up of Mikhail Sergeev, Olena Oblamska, Sergey Maslakov and Vladimir Okhotnikov were indicted for running the $340 million crypto pyramid scheme.
The 4 scammers were behind a platform called Forsage that boasted about high returns on investment for those who put their money into the platform.
From United States Department of Justice:
the defendants aggressively promoted Forsage to the public through social media as a legitimate and lucrative business opportunity, but in reality, the defendants operated Forsage as a Ponzi and pyramid investment scheme
The scam managed to spread across the Ethereum blockchain, Binance Smart Chain and Tron.
When a new investor used the Forsage platform to deposit money into a smart contract, the money was sent directly to earlier investors who had interacted with Forsage.
New investors were unintentionally sending money to previous investors who had used Forsage before them. This gave users the impression that their investments were being inflated by smart contracts rather than a steady stream of new investors.
United States Department of Justice:
all they were doing was running a classic Ponzi scheme. The technology may change, but the scams remain the same and with the collaboration amongst all our partners, we’re able to see through the phony promises and bring the schemes to light.