US Regulator Charges South African MTI and Its Operator With $1.7 Billion Fraud Involving Bitcoin

Must read

LINK staking in community pool filled within the first 2 hours

LINK staking in community pool filled within the first 2 hours Soumen Datta · 35 mins ago · 1 min...

CryptoSlate Wrapped Daily: Hopes for Celsius withdrawals to reopen, Do Kwon questions SBF involvement in LUNA crash

CryptoSlate Wrapped Daily: Hopes for Celsius withdrawals to reopen, Do Kwon questions SBF involvement in LUNA crash Liam 'Akiba' Wright ·...

Huobi predicts crypto market bottom in early 2023

Huobi predicts crypto market bottom in early 2023 Christian Nwobodo · 2 hours ago · 2 min read ...

Kevin O’Leary paid $15 million as a FTX spokesperson, but lost it all

Kevin O’Leary paid $15 million as a FTX spokesperson, but lost it all Soumen Datta · 2 hours ago · ...

US Regulator Charges South African MTI and Its Operator in CFTC's Largest Bitcoin Fraud Case

The U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has charged Mirror Trading International (MTI) and its operator with a $1.7 billion fraud involving bitcoin. This action is the regulator’s largest fraud scheme case involving the cryptocurrency.

CFTC Takes Action Against MTI

The CFTC announced Thursday that it has charged a “South African pool operator and CEO with $1.7 billion fraud involving bitcoin.” The regulator added:

This action is CFTC’s largest fraud scheme case involving bitcoin.

The derivatives watchdog has filed a civil enforcement action, charging Cornelius Johannes Steynberg and Mirror Trading International Proprietary Ltd. (MTI) with “fraud and registration violations.”

From approximately May 18, 2018, through March 20 last year, “Steynberg, individually and as the controlling person of MTI, engaged in an international fraudulent multilevel marketing scheme … to solicit bitcoin from members of the public for participation in a commodity pool operated by MTI,” the CFTC detailed, elaborating:

During this period, Steynberg … accepted at least 29,421 bitcoin — with a value of over $1,733,838,372 at the end of the period.

The announcement adds that the CFTC “seeks full restitution to defrauded investors, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, civil monetary penalties, permanent registration and trading bans, and a permanent injunction against future violations of the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC Regulations.”

The derivatives watchdog described:

The defendants misappropriated, either directly or indirectly, all of the bitcoin they accepted from the pool participants.

The CFTC concluded: “Sternberg is a fugitive from South African law enforcement, but was recently detained in the Federative Republic of Brazil on an Interpol arrest warrant.”

What do you think about the CFTC’s action against MTI and its operator? Let us know in the comments section below.

Kevin Helms

A student of Austrian Economics, Kevin found Bitcoin in 2011 and has been an evangelist ever since. His interests lie in Bitcoin security, open-source systems, network effects and the intersection between economics and cryptography.

Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons

Disclaimer: This article is for informational purposes only. It is not a direct offer or solicitation of an offer to buy or sell, or a recommendation or endorsement of any products, services, or companies. Bitcoin.com does not provide investment, tax, legal, or accounting advice. Neither the company nor the author is responsible, directly or indirectly, for any damage or loss caused or alleged to be caused by or in connection with the use of or reliance on any content, goods or services mentioned in this article.

More articles

Latest article

LINK staking in community pool filled within the first 2 hours

LINK staking in community pool filled within the first 2 hours Soumen Datta · 35 mins ago · 1 min...

CryptoSlate Wrapped Daily: Hopes for Celsius withdrawals to reopen, Do Kwon questions SBF involvement in LUNA crash

CryptoSlate Wrapped Daily: Hopes for Celsius withdrawals to reopen, Do Kwon questions SBF involvement in LUNA crash Liam 'Akiba' Wright ·...

Huobi predicts crypto market bottom in early 2023

Huobi predicts crypto market bottom in early 2023 Christian Nwobodo · 2 hours ago · 2 min read ...

Kevin O’Leary paid $15 million as a FTX spokesperson, but lost it all

Kevin O’Leary paid $15 million as a FTX spokesperson, but lost it all Soumen Datta · 2 hours ago · ...

Binance Labs leads funding round for GoPlus Security to advance web3 security infrastructure

Binance Labs leads funding round for GoPlus Security to advance web3 security infrastructure Josh O'Sullivan · 3 hours ago · ...