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FBI puts “crypto queen” Ruja Ignatova on top 10 most wanted list

2022-07-01T08:10:03.714Z

Ruja Ignatova invented the Gaga currency OneCoin, robbed millions of investors of their money - and then disappeared without a trace. Now she's on the US Federal Police's famous "Ten Most Wanted" list.



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FBI poster showing US Federal Police searching for Ruja Ignatova

Photo:

HANDOUT / AFP

The FBI has put suspected crypto fraudster Ruja Ignatova on its list of the ten most wanted criminals.

"Ignatova is wanted for alleged leadership of a massive fraud scheme that affected millions of investors worldwide," the FBI said in a statement.

The agency also promises a reward of up to $100,000 (around €95,000) for information leading to Ignatova's arrest.

The FBI also warns that the 42-year-old - nicknamed "Crypto Queen" - could travel with armed guards.

In addition, she may have undergone surgery or changed her appearance in some other way.

Ignatova was born in Bulgaria and has German citizenship: She went to school in the Black Forest town of Schramberg and did her doctorate in law in Konstanz on Lake Constance.

She is accused of having prompted investors around the world to invest in the actually worthless currency OneCoin.

According to US court documents, she is said to have stolen at least $3.4 billion from the crypto fraud, possibly even more than $4 billion.

The 42-year-old has been in hiding since October 2017.

She disappeared after a trip from the Bulgarian capital Sofia to the Greek capital Athens.

A worldwide search is on for Ignatova.

In Germany, she is being investigated for money laundering and joint fraud in a particularly serious case.

In May, the ZDF program "Aktenzeichen XY ... unsolved" also broadcast a public manhunt for her (you can read more about the investigations into Ignatova and her alleged accomplices here).

The FBI now says it hopes that Ignatova's placement on the "Ten Most Wanted" list will bring the case new attention.

"There are so many victims around the world who have lost money," said Ronald Shimko of the New York FBI.

You want justice.

The FBI's Ten Most Wanted list has been around for 72 years.

According to the authorities, Ignatova is only the eleventh woman to appear on it.

aar/AFP

Source: spiegel

All tech articles on 2022-07-01

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