Crypto exchange owner gets 10 years in prison for aiding scammers

Rossen Iossifov, the convicted owner of the crypto exchange platform RG Coins, has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for money laundering.

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, a federal jury in Frankfurt, Kentucky, found the Bulgarian citizen guilty of extortion and money laundering conspiracy as early as September 2020. The guilty verdict came after only two weeks of trial.

According to the U.S. Department of Justice, Iossifov and other key RG Coins actors participated in an elaborate money laundering conspiracy Tuesday that resulted in over $ 7 million being defrauded at least 900 Americans.

As part of the scam, Iossifov and other co-conspirators would advertise non-existent luxury items on major auction channels like Craigslist and eBay. Funds from this operation were routinely channeled to criminal organizations via crypto payments.

The Justice Department communique also revealed that Iossifov was laundering money for AOAF, a well-known cybercrime syndicate based in Eastern Europe. In total, Iossifov has reportedly poured nearly $ 5 million in dirty money through the RG Coins platform in exchange for cryptocurrencies.

Despite claims to the contrary, Iossifov’s Bulgaria-based RG Coins platform has not mandated compliance for Know Your Customer. The convicted Bulgarian reportedly earned $ 184,000 from the proceeds of these money laundering transactions.

Of the 20 key players in RG Coins’ money laundering system, 17 have been convicted so far. Iossifov’s sentence is the longest of the seven people convicted to date. The authorities are still looking for the three refugees who are still at large.

As a federal prisoner in the United States, Iossifov must serve at least 85% of his 121-month sentence.

Iossifov is the newest crypto exchange operator to be jailed for money laundering. In December 2020, a French court sentenced Alexander Vinnik to five years in prison for his role in the BTC e-money laundering case.

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