The Story of Boaz Manor and the $31 Million Blockchain Scam in Blockchain Terminal ICO
The blockchain community has been frequently critiqued by financial professionals all over the world of the ease by which nefarious scammers are able to swindle money out of the pockets of naïve market participants. Because blockchain technology is often promoted with the overt promise of anonymity and decentralization, it has made it easier than ever for criminals to defraud investors, going dark after winning millions of dollars in decentralized support from the project’s proponents.
A recent investigation has made it even clearer than ever that scamming on the blockchain is as prevalent as ever, and its perpetrators are strikingly similar to the criminals who operate in the traditional financial markets. A probe by The Block into the identity behind the scammer who ran the fraudulent blockchain ICO Blockchain Terminal revealed that the name of the CEO was actually a pseudonym for an existing criminal who had already been convicted of a similar crime in 2012.
The investigation into the major scam began with Shaun MacDonald. Interviews conducted by The Block in the previous couple months revealed that the $31 million blockchain scam was run by the enigmatic figure going by the name Shaun MacDonald. MacDonald had successfully solicited millions of dollars in funding from individuals all over the world, most coming from Asia and Australia.
But as many within the crypto space now know, the entire operation was a facade. There was never a genuine intention to create a sustainable product or business model. Instead, the scheme was yet another example of a scam on the blockchain meant to net millions of dollars in illegitimate, dirty money for its leaders and nothing for the investors who put their own capitol into the project.
A Hidden Identity
But as it turns out, the name “Shaun MacDonald” turned out to be a fake name entirely, used to conceal the true identity of the man behind the scam. After figuring out that Shaun MacDonald was effectively “a ghost” on the internet, The Block figured out that the organization was actually being run by Boaz Manor. Manor is a financial criminal most well-known for his orchestration of a massive financial scam in Canada in 2012—a crime for which he was jailed.
Boaz had misappropriated and misallocated hundreds of millions of dollars and potentially stealing $8.8 million in diamonds from Hong Kong. Now, it seems that the financial titan has returned once more, this time choosing to defraud investors within the quickly-growing and ever-shady blockchain ICO industry.