Greek law enforcement recently attempted to locate Ruja Ignatova, founder of the infamous Onecoin pyramid scheme. According to a major Greek daily, investigators acted on intelligence suggesting she was still in the country. Also known as “Cryptoqueen”, Ignatova was last seen on a plane bound for Greece several years ago.
Athens authorities are trying to find the ‘missing Cryptoqueen’ who flew to Greece 5 years ago
Greece has become the scene of the latest episode in the manhunt of Ruja Ignatova, one of the co-founders of the notorious crypto-pyramid Onecoin. The country is believed to be the last destination she visited before she disappeared nearly five years ago.
Ignatova, nicknamed the “Cryptoqueen”, has been missing since October 25, 2017 when she boarded a Ryanair flight to Athens in the Bulgarian capital Sofia. She is now wanted by Interpol, Europol and the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for embezzling at least $4 billion from investors in the fake cryptocurrency project.
Citing Hellenic Police (EL.AS.) sources, the Kathimerini newspaper reported this week that Greek authorities had received intelligence, obtained locally and from abroad, indicating that Ignatova was in Greece and was holding meetings with specific people.
Less than a month ago, EL.AS. launched a special operation to detain her. However, despite active search efforts, investigators were unable to confirm the information they had and catch him, the main Greek daily revealed.
When the FBI added Ignatova on its ten most wanted fugitives list, the agency said she may have been traveling with a fraudulent passport and may have visited the United Arab Emirates, Bulgaria, Germany, Russia , Greece and Eastern Europe, where she had known connections.
Kathimerini’s law enforcement sources noted that a dozen countries are now working closely together to pinpoint his whereabouts, actively exchanging documents related to the case. The investigation is continuing full force, and in fact, law enforcement is stepping up their efforts to tighten the noose around the Cryptoqueen.
The Global Onecoin Pyramid Brain Hunt Continues
The FBI is offering $100,000 as a reward for information leading to the arrest of the only woman among the top ten fugitives on its rankings. In mid-May, Ruja Ignatova was also listing by Europol as one of the most wanted in Europe, while Interpol issued a red notice for her accompanied by a monetary reward as well.
The Onecoin co-founder is now considered one of the most enigmatic fraudsters in the world, the newspaper notes. Ignatova, 42, was born to Roma parents in Bulgaria, but when she was just ten her family moved to Germany and she also became a German citizen.
Ruja graduated from Oxford University in 2005 and later obtained a doctorate in private international law from the University of Konstanz. While she reportedly worked for management consultancy McKinsey & Company, her dark career began before 2012, when she was convicted of fraud related to the acquisition of a company that went bankrupt and was fined. a 14-month suspended sentence.
After a brief involvement in a multi-layered marketing scam called Big Coin the following year, in 2014 Ignatova created the Onecoin pyramid scheme around a supposed blockchain-based cryptocurrency advertised as “Bitcoin killer”, which has lured investors with promises of a “financial revolution”. ” She led and promoted the project with her partner Sebastien Greenwoodwho is now imprisoned in the United States, and her brother Konstantin Ignatov, who sought witness protection after his arrest in Los Angeles in 2019.
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