Controversial cryptocurrency project OneCoin has denied all claims against it of being a Ponzi or pyramid scheme.
The project again came under scrutiny when the ministers of a church in the Pacific nation of Samoa invited representatives of OneCoin to speak to its congregation in April.
This alerted the Central Bank of Samoa which came out with a statement last month calling the crypto project a “hybrid Ponzi-pyramid scheme” and accusing it of having “laundered money through New Zealand to Samoa,” according to a May 14 report by the Samoa Observer.
After publishing the report, the Samoan news agency received a statement from OneCoin which denied all claims made by the central bank, defending the project against being a Ponzi or pyramid scheme.
“Let it be clear that neither OneCoin nor OneLife companies have organization, representation or employees in Samoa and New Zealand.” OneCoin’s statement reads. “OneCoin is a centralized, closed cryptocurrency. The closed system has strict AML and CFT (Anti-Money Laundering and Combating the Financing of Terrorism) policies as well as KYC (Know your customer) implementation, as in our case, prevents anonymous transactions.”
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The company also elaborated that its agents as part of the OneLife Network are Independent Marketing Associates (IMA) and not consumers.
“The users which are part of the OneLife Network are NOT consumers. They are IMAs, meaning they are self-employed business owners,” the statement added.
“IMAs’ success depends entirely on their personal commitment, abilities and effort. IMAs can obtain an educational package and can only receive a bonus for their marketing activity, meaning they are not obliged to incur any additional expenses or recruit a new IMA.”
Founded in 2014, the crypto project by the Bulgarian entrepreneur Ruja Ignatova attracted the attention of regulators around the world for its pyramid-like structure. According to the US Department of Justice, the company has generated more than $2.5 billion in profits in less than two years.
Though its founder has disappeared from public view since 2017, the United States’ Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) nabbed her brother in March over charges of fraud.
In April, Singaporean authorities also booked two men for their involvement in promoting the controversial project. The promoters of the project are also facing a lawsuit in a New York court for duping investors, Finance Magnates reported earlier.