Famed anti-virus pioneer John McAfee has been indicted on fees of cryptocurrency fraud, income laundering and more.
The 75-yr-outdated, who is in Spain awaiting extradition to the US for tax evasion, is accused of conspiring with govt advisor Jimmy Watson and other folks on two fraud techniques working from December 2017-October 2018.
The 1st was a vintage pump-and-dump in which the defendants allegedly bought large numbers of publicly traded altcoins, promoted them on Twitter with no revealing their stake, and then marketed them for a gain.
The Department of Justice (DoJ) claimed McAfee, Watson and the other folks produced $2m from the scalping plan.
In the next scheme, McAfee, Watson and some others employed McAfee’s official Twitter account to promote preliminary coin offerings (ICOs) without the need of disclosing they ended up being compensated by ICO issuers to do so.
This created them an believed $11m which the defendants subsequently tried out to conceal from investors. The duo are also alleged to have brought about a different member of the team to launder the income.
McAfee and Watson, 40, are charged in a 7-depend indictment with one depend of conspiracy to commit commodities and securities fraud, a person depend of conspiracy to commit securities and touting fraud, two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud and two counts of substantive wire fraud and a person depend of conspiracy to commit funds laundering.
The charges could direct to greatest sentences of decades powering bars and economic penalties.
“As alleged, McAfee and Watson used social media to perpetrate an age-old pump-and-dump scheme that gained them nearly $2m. Additionally, they allegedly made use of the exact same social media platform to boost the sale of digital tokens on behalf of ICO issuers without having disclosing to traders the compensation they had been receiving to tout these securities on behalf of the ICO,” claimed FBI assistant director, William Sweeney.
“When engaging in unlawful activity, basically obtaining new ways to carry out old methods will not deliver distinctive benefits. Expenditure fraud and money laundering strategies carry a rigid penalty under federal regulation.”
McAfee was arrested in Spain past yr. The SEC has also submitted civil rates in opposition to McAfee and Watson relating to the case.
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