The former lawyer of the crypto pyramid scheme OneCoin has asked a US court to postpone his sentencing date, which was initially scheduled for April 22, following his conviction as part of a $400 million money-laundering operation.
According to a recent letter filed by Mark Scott’s counsel, the OneCoin co-conspirator wanted to push forward the date to take place on May 26, or a date thereafter. Separately, the lawyer filed to reschedule his appearance for a bond hearing to February 26 due to Scott’s pre-scheduled medical appointment.
The legal notice further reads: “Should February 26 be unsuitable, defense counsel is unavailable on February 27th and 28th. In addition, Mr. Scott respectfully requests that the Court direct the Government to make a submission no later than Friday, February 21, 2020, setting forth its arguments for any change in bail conditions. This will allow defense counsel to investigate and respond to any arguments that the Government may offer at or before the hearing.”
Mark Scott was already convicted back in November 2019 after the court found him guilty on two counts — conspiracy to commit bank fraud and the conspiracy to commit money laundering. The co-conspirator has also asked the court earlier this month to acquit him of the charges in one of the largest crypto scams. Scott cited insufficient evidence and questioned the integrity of the witnesses against him.
A fraud that started in 2016
OneCoin was founded in 2014 by Bulgarian businesswoman and Konstantin’s sister Ruja Ignatova, who served as OneCoin’s top leader until her disappearance three years ago. Since 2016, the project has been a subject of investigations in China and India, and several regulators have issued warnings against its operations.
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OneCoin operated a multi-level marketing network where more than three million members worldwide were offered a reward for buying coins and attracting more users. The platform pays its affiliate members commissions for introducing others to purchase its cryptocurrency and contribute to a related ICO.
A few months later, Ignatova was arrested in India, along with another 30 individuals, charged with running a scam involving thousands of investors. Indian police noted that OneCoin money was stored in 35 different bank accounts, and the majority of it was transferred to an unknown location shortly after the arrests were made.
The FBI has also arrested Mark Scott, a former partner with the international law firm Locke Lord, who has been accused of laundering approximately $400 million, which investigators claim is the proceeds of OneCoin scheme.
Investigators say that Scott laundered funds through hedge funds in the Cayman Islands and sent the majority of these funds back to the unnamed founders of the scheme.