Founded in 2014, Bulgaria-based firm OneCoin is an alleged crypto exit scam that reportedly raised $4.4 billion in a Ponzi scheme and laundered $400 million over its years of operation. Co-founder Konstantin Ignatov pleaded guilty to those charges, while his sister and co-founder Ruja Ignatova, also known as “cryptoqueen,” is currently a fugitive. The company has since been hit by a massive class-action lawsuit, with legal proceedings currently ongoing.
Aside from the fugitive founder and legal investigation, the OneCoin saga is far from over, with former “employee” Quoc-Hung, also known as Simon Le, currently using OneCoin’s existing channels to prop up a similar Ponzi scheme called OneLink.
OneCoin is not the only investment scam of prominence in the crypto industry, with other notable Ponzi schemes including Bitconnect and PlusToken. These schemes involve a multilevel marketing model that incentives “representatives” to sell memberships to an enterprise with no genuine product. Schemes such as these have resulted in billions of dollars in fraudulent activity, which has certainly marred the industry’s reputation in the eyes of the broader marketplace and regulatory authorities worldwide.