The United States government’s request for a delay on the judgment of OneCoin co-founder Konstantin Ignatov has been granted New York Southern District Court.
Reports confirmed earlier today that the District Court approved the request yesterday after the government had filed a motion to adjourn Ignatov’s sentencing a bit longer. The sentencing, which was initially to happen on April 8, 2020, will now be shifted to July 8, 2020.
A Useful Part of the Government’s Campaign Against OneCoin
Ignatov founded OneCoin in Bulgaria with his sister, Ruja Ignatova. Both oversaw the scam that milked investors out of about $4 billion across several years. While Ignatova has gone into hiding since the firm got exposed, the Feds picked up Ignatov at the Los Angeles International Airport last March – shortly before he hopped on a plane, presumably to go into hiding himself.
In that time, the brother of the infamous “Crypto Queen” has pleaded guilty to participating in the scam operation. His sentence could carry a jail term as much as 90 years.
Konstantin has confirmed that he doesn’t know where his sister is. However, he has testified that her security personnel told him after she fled that she was going to meet with some unnamed Russian speakers.
Since then, Matthew Russell Lee, founder of investigative journalism-oriented publication Inner City Press, has also said that Ignatova informed him that she’s being protected by a “rich and powerful” Russian individual.
Konstantin has also co-operated with investigators in the case of Mark Scott, an attorney who has been found guilty of helping Ignatova to launder as much as $400 million of her illegal funds. The attorney was found to have profited about $50 million from that transaction alone, and last November, a Manhattan jury comprising of six women and six men handed him his guilty verdict.
Mark Scott Tries to Delay Fate
However, Scott hasn’t gone down without a fight. When his guilty verdict came in, he went on the offensive and criticized the witnesses’ testimony against him.
To make a case, the government had gotten testimonies from about 17 witnesses against Scott. They included government agents, several OneCoin victims, and employees from American banks that had worked with OneCoin. Konstantin also gave his testimony damning Scott.
Scott eventually slammed the testimonies, claiming that they were based on innuendos and hearsay. He added that they weren’t sufficient to justify any of the fraud charges leveled against him. He also explained that he didn’t realize the company he worked with was a scam, and that he was just an innocent pawn in the entire operation.
With all of these, he went on to plead with the court for an acquittal. The government, however, was expeditious in its rebuttal, claiming that the guilty verdict will still stand.
“Legitimate investment funds whose transactions involve proceeds from lawful activities do not forge documents and create false records on a routine basis,” the government’s memo explained, adding that his argument had no merit.