US Govt seeks $392.9m forfeiture money judgment against OneCoin co-conspirator

Maria Nikolova

Scott was convicted of having conspired with “cryptoqueen” Ruja Ignatova to launder approximately $392,940,000 in proceeds of a wire fraud scheme involving a purported cryptocurrency known as OneCoin.

The United States Government is seeking a heavy forfeiture judgment against OneCoin co-conspirator Mark Scott. This becomes clear from a letter submitted at the New York Southern District Court on September 1, 2020.

The Government applies for a preliminary order of forfeiture imposing a forfeiture money judgment in the amount of $392,940,000 as part of the sentence of Mark S. Scott. As part of the Preliminary Order of Forfeiture, the Government seeks to forfeit Scott’s interest in certain bank accounts, which constitute property involved in the money laundering offense Scott was convicted of at trial, and certain specific property and assets that are traceable to such property.

As the evidence showed at trial, from at least in or about September 2015 through 2018, the defendant conspired with Ruja Ignatova, and others, to launder approximately $392,940,000 in proceeds of a wire fraud scheme involving a purported cryptocurrency known as OneCoin. Ignatova was one of the co-founders of OneCoin. Scott – a U.S. citizen and attorney, employed for a portion of the relevant time period as a partner at an international law firm – organized and operated a series of investment funds known as the “Fenero Funds,” which he used for the purpose of laundering OneCoin fraud proceeds.

In addition, the Government pushes for a post-conviction restraining order against Scott. According to the Government, the evidence introduced at trial prove that the defendant diverted and dissipated the proceeds of the scheme charged in the Indictment through a multitude of banks accounts in the name of shell companies and other entities that the defendant controlled. The proceeds were dissipated in a complex series of transactions substantially for the benefit of Scott and his co-conspirators, including Ruja Ignatova, that were designed to avoid detection. Only a small portion of the nearly $400 million in funds laundered by Scott have been identified and seized or restrained.

Moreover, based upon the Government’s investigation to date, the defendant has continued to dissipate proceeds of the offenses of conviction, notwithstanding a Post-Indictment Restraining Order applicable to “property or other interests . . . subject to forfeiture,” various seizure warrants, and a forfeiture bill of particulars.

The Government therefore requests that Court enter a post-conviction order restraining Scott’s assets until the Court determines whether the those assets are properly forfeited to the United States.

Scott’s sentencing is currently scheduled for October 9, 2020.

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