A recent episode of the popular BBC Sounds podcast the “Missing Cryptoqueen” has shown the public a very interesting view of the powerful Onecoin Ponzi. According to two witnesses the BBC interviewed, a London law firm and a reputation management company allegedly managed to get the UK’s Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to take down a Onecoin warning.
The Bulgaria-based Ponzi scheme Onecoin was once described by The Times as “one of the biggest scams in history” managing to net $4 billion from operations. The pyramid scheme has become a hot topic over the years, and it’s invoked the BBC Sounds podcast the “Missing Cryptoqueen.”
The show stars the British author and journalist, Jamie Bartlett, and its also produced by the well known documentary producer Georgia Catt. The latest BBC Sounds podcast episode 9, dives into the continued search for Onecoin’s missing leader Ruja Ignatova, otherwise known as the ‘Cryptoqueen.’
During the episode, Bartlett explains how the Cryptoqueen’s brother, Konstantin Ignatov, has been working with U.S. law enforcement. Ignatov told the court a tale about Ruja’s relationship with Gilbert Armenta and how Ruja allegedly took off with powerful Russians.
Then Bartlett discusses two individuals who had information on a London law firm and a “crisis management PR company.” One of the men was a lawyer named Gary Gilford and the other was a former Chelgate employee Simon Harris. Chelgate is the reputation management company that ostensibly helped Onecoin avoid problems.
Both Gilford and Harris never met each other, but they both told a tale of how the London law firm and Chelgate managed to get the FCA to remove the Onecoin warning issued in September 2016. Ten months later, the FCA warning, which warned retail investors about investing in the Onecoin project, was removed.
Harris explained that Chelgate worked with the law firm in order to “pressurize” the FCA into “weakening” the regulator’s efforts against Onecoin. The witnesses say that the Cryptoqueen and many high up members of the Ponzi were super pleased with the FCA warning removal. The discussion with the former Chelgate employee Harris begins at the 22:00 minute mark during the “Missing Cryptoqueen” episode.
Meanwhile, one of the Onecoin leaders, Sebastian Greenwood had his pre-trial conference on Friday. Matthew Russell Lee from the Inner City Press reported from the courtroom, and explained that Greenwood’s next court date will be on October 5. Greenwood has been charged but the court seems to be having difficulty with specific court processes. The lawyers say that “video conferences take ten days to set up”