On Thursday, OneCoin’s former head of legal and compliance, Irina Dilkinska, pled guilty to money laundering and wire fraud charges related to the multi-billion dollar pyramid scheme.
Appearing in Manhattan federal court, Dilkinska admitted that she helped launder illicit profits worth $110 million that were generated through the global multi-level marketing network of OneCoin.
Even though her role was to oversee legal and compliance matters, she also assisted in the day-to-day operations of the company and failed to ensure compliance with the law.
Charges were filed against Dilkinska back in March and she had been extradited to the United States from Bulgaria.
A statement issued by Damian Williams, the US Attorney, said that despite her role as ‘Head of Legal and Compliance’, Dilkinska had done the exact opposite of what her position required.
The US Attorney said that Dilkinska had helped launder illicit profits of OneCoin worth millions of dollars that had been generated via its multi-level marketing scheme.
Dilkinska will be sentenced in February 2024 and could face five years of prison for every count. She is the latest defendant to have been brought forward in the ongoing case related to OneCoin.
It should be noted that Ruja Ignatova, who was the ringleader of the OneCoin scheme, disappeared in 2017 and remains at large.
Last year in June, her name was added to the Top Ten Most Wanted List of the FBI. She founded OneCoin in 2014 with Karl Sebastian Greenwood.
The fraudulent crypto had been marketed as a revolutionary digital currency that was meant to overtake the pioneer crypto token, Bitcoin.
Called the ‘Cryptoqueen’ Ignatova had launched the OneCoin token with Greenwood in Sofia, Bulgaria, and had used the global multi-level marketing structure for promoting and selling fake packages related to the fake crypto.
Earlier this year, officials in Bulgaria claimed that Ignatova, the OneCoin founder, had been murdered in 2018.
This report was based on documents that had been found in the possession of a police officer in Bulgaria, who had also been murdered recently.
The pyramid-like commission structure helped OneCoin enjoy rapid growth, as members received rewards for recruiting other people to buy the crypto packages.
Almost 3 million people all over the world had invested in OneCoin and it allowed it to sales revenue of more than $4 billion between late 2014 and late 2016.
However, OneCoin did not have any real crypto or blockchain behind it, and its purpose was only aimed at defrauding investors out of billions of dollars.
In 2017, Ignatova disappeared after charges were filed against her, and Greenwood had been arrested in 2018.
In December last year, Greenwood pled guilty to charges of money laundering and wire fraud and he was sentenced this year in September.
According to the Department of Justice (DOJ), he will serve 20 years in prison for the part he played in OneCoin.