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In 2016, an massive cryptocurrency opportunity was unveiled that essentially alleged that OneCoin had been lying to its customers about the true value of the digital currency that the company was offering.
A recent in-depth investigation has revealed that British South Asian Muslims living in the United Kingdom were the most impacted victims by OneCoin cryptocurrency scam, as they were duped to believe that the investment in the company had some potential.
What is of interest right now is how OneCoin mislead British South Asian Muslims living in the United Kingdom to believe in the scam. It is noteworthy that OneCoin has always engaged in ‘multi-level marketing’ where a customer is encouraged and even urged to invite friends and family members into the scheme as well, and if the recruited members make a sale, a commission is received by the customer.
So essentially the guy at the top makes the greatest buck. The problem for Muslims around the world is that the religious leaders preaching Islam continued to debate on the legality of cryptocurrency. OneCoin, however, publicized a Shariah-compliant certificate, issued by the Pakistan-based Al-Huda Center of Islamic Banking and Economics. This was well received by the Muslims of South Asian origin in the U.K. who were eager to trade in OneCoin.
Fast-forward in time, thousands of people flocked to investing in the OneCoin fraud. The dollars kept raking up for the company until it was eventually exposed by investigators who found out that the company was offering a product that was essentially backed by no valuable asset.
Interestingly, the Bulgarian founder of OneCoin, Ruja Ignatova, went missing in 2017 and as of now she is still missing and wanted by authorities of several nations including the U.S. Despite her disappearance, OneCoin continues to dispute the allegations leveled against it. But, there is an ongoing criminal proceeding in the U.S. against it and the company’s operations have been shut down in Italy and several people associated with it have been arrested in China (whence the investments flowed in the greatest numbers) and India.
OneCoin was founded in 2014 when various other, legitimate, cryptocurrencies were also being launched. The likes of Ethereum (ETH)trade and Litecoin (LTC)trade joined the global crypto stage in the same year, which probably added to the sense of legitimacy that OneCoin exploited.
By 2017, the company amassed more than $4 billion in investments from a pool of investors that spanned around 175 countries. Almost $500 million of the investments came from China alone. Later investigations revealed that the OneCoin crypto Ponzi scam essentially hyped up the value of the digital coin 60 times higher than the actual market value.