News: Bitcointopia busted, OneCoin busted, 1pool busted, Canada audits crypto traders

“Bitcointopia” fraudster Morgan Rockcoons has pled guilty to wire fraud for his scheme to sell land in Nevada to libertarians — the “Galt’s Gulch” scam, with bitcoins.

The US Justice Department has charged Konstantin Ignatov and Ruja Ignatova, founders of OneCoin, with wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering. Did you know there was never even a coin?

The CFTC has settled with 1pool/1broker and its CEO Patrick Brunner, for having offered unlawful retail commodity transactions — specifically, Contracts for Difference, settled in bitcoin — failure to register as a futures commission merchant, and failure to implement a KYC/AML programme. 1pool has been fined $421,000 and have to pay back their customers’ bitcoins. Here’s the consent order. This applied even thought 1pool were based outside the US — but had US customers. Gosh, I wonder if any exchanges have done any of these things.

Let none repeat the calumny that Bitcoin has any link to organised crime or drugs, and never mind that two Australian crypto exchanges just got suspended for precisely this.

Texas state representative Phil Stephenson (R, district 85) has proposed a bill to ban anonymous crypto transactions — it requires identity verification for all transactions, unless the digital currency is a “verified identity digital currency.” Also, “This state may not use a digital currency that is not a verified identity digital currency.” It’s not clear how much push this bill has behind it, though.

Bitcoin users in Canada are being targeted for audits by the Canada Revenue Agency, who have a sudden interest in regulation of cryptocurrencies. They’re starting by sending out questionnaires — here’s a copy.

I’m shocked, shocked to hear that there’s rampant wash trading still going on at exchanges!

Kyle S. Gibson: 100 Crypto Thefts: A Timeline of Hacks, Glitches, Exit Scams, and other Lost Cryptocurrency Incidents.

There’s a ton of Quadriga updates from Amy Castor. “After I published that story, WB21, threatened me with legal action. I responded by posting the documents they sent. Since then, I’ve been getting anonymous threats via social media, telling me to stop talking about Quadriga.” Amy and Kyle drove to Halifax in person!



The Winklevoss lawsuit against Charlie Shrem is not going so well — their lawyer, Tyler Meade, just got fined $15,000 for “improper behavior” during a February deposition in the case.

Frances Coppola: Bananas Don’t Make A Good Stablecoin.

From Reddit /r/cryptocurrency — Bag Holders — What’s been your worst investment? What did you learn from it?

When you really, really want that 0.00020549 BTC transaction to go through quickly — just put a 2 BTC fee on it!

Man gambles with Dogecoin on an online casino owned by a guy called HERPES, is surprised to receive a whole quarter of his winnings.

Setl is a blockchain startup that offers … something … blockchainy for finance — they don’t actually say what. Worst and most uninformative website. Anyway, they just ran out of money. But they’re not bankrupt! — they’re totally appointing administrators as, uh, part of a new growth strategy.

Jake Adelstein and Nathalie Stucky’s Pay the Devil in Bitcoin — a story of Mark Karpèles and the collapse of Mt. Gox — has been released in French, as J’ai vendu mon âme en bitcoins (FR, CA, UK). Here’s an interview with Adelstein on France 24. And here’s Adelstein on what’s happened with Mt. Gox in the ensuing two years.

Derek Magill, the guy behind the Nakamoto Studies Institute, is literally a straight-up neo-Nazi — but God forbid anyone claim Bitcoin has far-right links of any sort.

The Cryptocurrency of the Middle Ages — holy relics.

Francis Jervis: From Economization to Tokenization: New forms of economic life on-chain. A good and interesting draft, that I’ve given some comments already (from my notes on early ICO history).

BBC Radio 4 just put up File on 4: The Crypto Factor — The Winners and Losers in Virtual Investment, featuring Amy Castor, Frances Coppola and me on QuadrigaCX and BitConnect. (I had to read up really quickly on BitConnect.)






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