Court Denies Bail Application from OneCoin Leader Despite Attractive Bail Conditions
A final desperate effort to secure bail and at least somewhat lessen the role played by Konstantin Ignatov in the OneCoin Ponzi scheme has been denied. Konstantin, who stands accused of conspiracy to commit wire fraud, was arrested on the 6th of March, 2019 at the Los Angeles International Airport for his role in the scam perpetrated by OneCoin Ltd and a supposed digital asset called OneCoin which saw the company receive billions of dollars from investors worldwide. This bail denial means that the accused would remain in custody of the authorities throughout the trial period.
The One Coin Scam
The OneCoin company maintained, among a few things, that it had a OneCoin cryptocurrency which was only mined by the company’s mining servers, especially operated by the company alone. The company also maintained that it had its own private blockchain for the coins. However, investigations showed that there is no real blockchain used by OneCoin.
Release Conditions Proposed By Defence Team
As part of the application, Ignatov’s defence team had proposed more than a few interesting release conditions in a bid to put the court at rest on the possibility of him becoming a flight risk and fleeing. As part of the conditions for his release, the team suggested 24 hour GPS location monitoring, $10 million in cash and properties leading up to a $20 million personal recognizance bond. Furthermore, Ignatov would pay armed guards round the clock, to make sure he doesn’t try to run away and only people authorized by the court would be allowed to visit him at home. It was also offered that he would not be using computers or phones except if they are required for him to properly prepare for trial.
Regardless of all the suggestions, it would seem that the government is unwilling to grant him bail and there might be no conditions acceptable. Judge Edgardo Ramos, the judge for the New York Southern District Court denied the application, insisting that Konstantin must face trial.
“He simply cannot be trusted to comply with any conditions set by the Court, having already lied to U.S. border agents, investigating case agents, and even the very Pre-trial Services Officers tasked with evaluating appropriate bail in this case”.
The Government also noted that granting him bail would also be very difficult because Konstantin has no immediate ties to the United States and could leave without missing anything. It has also been noted that he is a citizen of a few some of which would not be obligated to extradite him to the U.S. Lastly, it was noted that Konstantin is a widely travelled person who would know exactly where to go if he ever had the chance to flee and is disappearance would also be facilitated by his access to heavy financial resources.
Another point made by the government was that founder of OneCoin Ltd and OneLife Network Ltd – both related companies – is Konstantin’s sister, Ruja Ignatova, who is currently still at large and nowhere to be found.
Finally, it is alleged that the OneCoin head of security is also a part of large network of international drug traffickers and was directly involved in Ruja’s disappearance. However, the person is unnamed.