SEC charges more than $ 2 billion from BitConnect supporters for token sales

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a criminal complaint today against five people who allegedly promoted BitConnect, a cryptocurrency investment program with the features of a Ponzi scheme. The SEC claims BitConnect is a global unregistered digital asset securities offering. The SEC said the program raised more than $ 2 billion from private investors using an incentive network. BitClout has raised $ 160 million for celebrity-associated tokens. Is it all a scam? "We claim that these defendants are actively promoting the BitConnect loan program to retail investors, illegally selling unrecorded digital assets," said Lara Shalov Mehraban, Regional Director of SEC New York Regional Office, in a statement. "We will try to count those who make a profit illegally by taking advantage of the public interest in digital assets." Trevon Brown (also known as Trevon James), Craig Grant, Ryan Maasen, and Michael Noble (aka Michael Crypto) are promoters allegedly targeted by the SEC. Another defendant, Joshua Jeppesen, who served as a liaison between BitConnect and its supporters and represented BitConnect at conferences and promotional events, was also chosen by the SEC. BitConnect was considered a Ponzi program when it launched in 2017. It used a multi-tiered pyramid to explain how it works, and rewarded investors based on the number of people involved in the program. Its own token, BCC, was one of the 20 most valuable coins of the time and had a market value of over $ 2.6 billion. BitConnect promises an average daily return of one percent – the ability to convert $ 1,000 to $ 36,000 in a year. It collapsed in 2018, when regulators took over the project and forced the platform to shut down. Investors took their BCCs, but at that time the coin dropped below $ 1 from nearly $ 500, its all-time high.

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