Bank of Ireland employees set to testify in OneCoin case

Maria Nikolova

One of the defendants in the case maintained corporate bank accounts at Bank of Ireland; through these accounts he is alleged to have laundered over $300 million in OneCoin fraud proceeds.

The criminal proceedings against a number of individuals associated with fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme OneCoin – including Konstantin Ignatov, Ruja Ignatova and Mark Scott, continue at the New York Southern District Court. The list of defendants in the case features those at the helm of OneCoin as well as those who allegedly helped launder OneCoin proceeds.

Details about who is going to testify against Scott, who stands accused of aiding and abetting the fraud committed by OneCoin, are starting to emerge.

On September 29, 2019, the United States Government submitted a Motion with the Court asking to offer the testimony of four witnesses during trial via two-way closed-circuit television from a remote location in the Republic of Ireland. The witnesses are all present or former employees of the Bank of Ireland, where Mark Scott maintained corporate bank accounts through which he is alleged to have laundered over $300 million in OneCoin fraud proceeds, accomplished through, among other means, misrepresentations made by the defendant to the witnesses.

The first witness Deirdre Ceannt, who, between 2014 and 2017 worked in the Foreign Direct Investment team at BOI. The second witness is Derek Collins, who served as Executive Vice President and Relationship Director for BOI in 2016. The third witness is Diane Sands, the head of the bank’s Anti-Money Laundering (AML) team. Finally, Greg Begley is poised to provide material and relevant evidence that he received and processed the paperwork submitted by the defendant for the BOI Fenero Accounts.

Mark Scott is charged in a one-count indictment with conspiracy to commit money laundering, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 1956(h). At trial, the Government will try to show that the defendant laundered approximately four hundred million dollars of proceeds from OneCoin through a series of purported private equity funds registered in the British Virgin Islands with accounts at banks located in the Cayman Islands (the so-called “Fenero Funds”).

The Government will also seek to establish that Scott transferred a significant portion of the funds to related bank accounts at the Bank of Ireland (BOI) in the Republic of Ireland. At trial, the Government will present evidence of misrepresentations made to banks, including BOI, and fund administrators by Scott and his co-conspirators in connection with the transfer of funds, in order to disguise the fact that the funds were derived from the OneCoin scheme.

The Government will try to prove that Scott misrepresented the source of monies received by the Fenero Funds to a fund administration firm, at least one of the Cayman Islands banks, and BOI. For example, through testimonial and documentary evidence, the Government will establish that the Fenero Funds Cayman bank accounts funded approximately €273 million in wire transfers benefitting three accounts held at BOI, each with a Fenero-related name and controlled by Scott. The evidence will establish that these funds consisted of OneCoin proceeds. At trial, the Government will also try to establish additional transfers of funds from the Fenero Funds Cayman accounts to the Fenero accounts at BOI.

The trial of Scott is currently scheduled to begin on November 4, 2019.

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