In a major development, a former executive from Deutsche Bank, a leading German financial institution, has been sentenced to 30 years in prison for participating in a cryptocurrency fraud scheme.
The US Department of Justice (DOJ) released a statement explaining the case, emphasizing the individual’s admission of guilt and describing the fraudulent activities involved.
Long Prison Sentence in Cryptocurrency Fraud Case
Rashawn Russell, according to the Department of Justice (DOJ), pleaded guilty in federal court in Brooklyn for his involvement in a scheme to defraud clients of the R3 Crypto Fund, an alleged cryptocurrency investment fund operated by Russell himself. Additionally, he admitted to participating in a separate identity theft scheme where he fraudulently obtained credit cards and access devices in other people’s names.
United States Magistrate Judge Sanket J. Bulsara oversaw the plea, and if convicted, Russell could face up to 30 years in prison. As part of the plea deal, he will also have to pay restitution of over $1.5 million.
The guilty plea was announced by Breon Peace, the United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York; Nicole M. Argentieri, Acting Assistant Attorney General for the Justice Department’s Criminal Division; and Eric Shen, Inspector-in-Charge of the US Postal Inspection Service, Criminal Investigations Group (USPIS).
United States Attorney Breon Peace highlighted how Russell exploited the interest in cryptocurrency markets to defraud clients. He also emphasized their commitment to holding wrongdoers in the digital asset markets accountable.
USPIS Inspector-in-Charge Eric Shen expressed pride in their efforts to protect people from evolving fraud threats. He noted that this case showed their dedication to bringing those who violate their fiduciary duty to justice.
According to court filings and facts presented during the plea hearing, between November 2020 and August 2022, Russell falsely promised investors that he would use their funds for profitable cryptocurrency investments. However, he allegedly used a significant portion of their money for personal gain, gambling, and paying back earlier investors. This resulted in at least 29 investors losing a total of $1.5 million.
Additionally, Russell engaged in a separate fraud scheme from September 2021 to June 2023, where he fraudulently obtained numerous credit cards and access devices in other people’s names, with the intention of making unauthorized transactions.
The case is being handled by the Business and Securities Fraud Section of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York, in collaboration with the Department of Justice, Criminal Division, Fraud Section.
Important: Please note that this article is only meant to provide information and should not be taken as legal, tax, investment, financial, or any other type of advice.
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