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Bulgarian Crypto Exchange Owner Sentenced To 10 Years in Prison for Laundering $5 Million

Republished by Plato

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A Bulgarian national was sentenced to serve ten years in prison after a major crypto-related fraud. Not long ago, the man was convicted in a transnational multimillion-dollar scheme to defraud over 900 American citizens.

An Auction Fraud That Victimized over 900 Americans

According to an official announcement by the United States Department of Justice, Rossen G. Yossifov, a 53-year-old man, had defrauded hundreds of American citizens during a well-masterminded illegal endeavor.

He managed and promoted the so-called RG Coins – a cryptocurrency exchange headquartered in Sofia, Bulgaria. Now, the US court has sentenced him for conspiracy to commit a Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) offense plus a conspiracy to commit money laundering.

During the crime, Iossifov and his Romanian co-conspirators, part of the Alexandria Online Auction Fraud (AOAF) Network, engaged a large-scale online fraud. They organized a false auction that victimized at least 900 Americans during its course.

As CryptoPotato reported, Iossifov was officially charged with participating and dictating the international fraud a few months ago. 

Providing Favorable Crypto Exchange Rates To Victims

According to initial court documents, the scammers made everything seem legit, providing invoices with trademarks of reputable firms to their victims.

One of the primary ways to lure people into the scam was that the conspirators designed their scheme to cater to criminal enterprises by providing better exchange rates to the AOAF Network members.

The Romania-based fraudsters posted false advertisements to popularize online auctions for expensive goods and vehicles that did not exist. They had also established call centers to offer customer support to advise client questions and “alleviate concerns over the advertisements.”

When convinced, victims had to fulfill a payment. Domestic associates of the criminals would accept the money, convert them into cryptocurrency, and transfer them to foreign-based money launderers. As per the announcement, Iossifov was the final gear that facilitated the last stage of the scheme.

Some of the trial’s evidence revealed that, in less than three years, Iossifov had laundered nearly $5 million in cryptocurrency for just four of his partners.

“This represented over $7 million in funds defrauded from American victims. In return, Iossifov made over $184,000 in proceeds from these transactions”, read the official court publication.

Apart from Iossifov and the five co-operators, so far, 17 more members of the Romanian crime network will face court for their role in this scheme. Seven others have already faced sentences with verdicts between 30 to 96 months. Three of the members of the scam are fugitives.

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Source: https://cryptopotato.com/bulgarian-crypto-exchange-owner-sentenced-to-10-years-in-prison-for-laundering-5-million/

Blockchain

Legacy Records, The First Record Label Paying Music Artists In Crypto

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From painters to digital artists to musicians, crypto continues to find integration across artistic mediums. Music continues to be a field that is ripe for revitalization, from a business standpoint. Accordingly, a number of different musicians have been releasing songs and albums as NFTs. Now, we have what’s being reported as the first official record label looking to get involved. The label looks to have artists join the ranks of other musicians getting involved in crypto.

Two-Pronged Approach

In a press release issued to start this week, Legacy Records CEO Keishia McLeod said it came down to “either get involved or get left behind”. McLeod cited unique income stream opportunities for artists and closed by saying that “this is the future, not a trend”. McLeod has stated previously her intent to drive the label to be at the forefront of leveraging emerging technology in music.

There are two major buckets contributing to Legacy’s approach. The first is the most notable, as the label will become the first to offer artists an opportunity to receive their advance and royalty payments in the form of crypto. The second is to engage artists with NFTs, allowing fans to participate in auctions for unique content. The label’s specific plans around NFTs, and number of artists seeking to get paid in crypto, have not yet been disclosed.

Related Reading | The “Hottest” NFT: Max Denison Pender Creates And Destroys A Self-Portrait In A Volcano 

As the crypto market grows, both artists and businesses are getting involved | Source: CRYPTOCAP-TOTAL on TradingView.com

Legacy Music’s Broader Business Growth 

Las Vegas-based Legacy Records, not to be confused with Sony’s Legacy Recordings, will look to take advantage of the potential press buzz from the announcement. However, in tandem with the release, the label also announced a to-be-name music distributor who has also agreed to pay Legacy Records artists in bitcoin. The label also merged with New Jersey entertainment lawyer Navarro Gray’s ‘The Gray Firm’, to provide legal guidance around digital execution.

McLeod has noted previously that the label has desired being a mainstay in revolutionizing the way music artists do business. In a January interview with the LA Tribune, McLeod cited Netflix’s impact on the film industry, adding that “we haven’t seen that yet in this industry, but it’s coming. We’re going to be a large part of making that happen”.

Related Reading | Reviewing Topps MLB’s First Swing At NFT Tech

Music Artists Emerging Into Crypto

Legacy’s roster has the potential to join a growing list of music artists that continue to engage with crypto and NFTs. Last month, we wrote about long-time hip-hop artist Eminem partnering with Nifty Gateway to release original instrumental beats. Saturday Night Live promptly had a sketch explaining the digital collectibles parodying Eminem’s “Without Me”.

Other musicians engaging with NFTs include DJ Premier, 3LAU, The Weeknd, Linkin Park’s Mike Shinoda, and more.

Each week, our team recaps the week’s NFT action with ‘NFTs In A Nutshell‘ – covering everything NFT, from sport, music, and more.

Featured image from Pixabay, Charts from TradingView.com

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://bitcoinist.com/the-first-record-label-paying-music-artists-in-crypto/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=the-first-record-label-paying-music-artists-in-crypto

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Blockchain

Speculation Tesla Dumped Its Bitcoin Holdings Denied By Musk

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Elon Musk puts to bed rumors that Tesla has sold its remaining Bitcoin holdings. The comments came following his second attack on the leading cryptocurrency. This time, he called out the dominance of Chinese mining pools in a now-deleted tweet.

Bitcoin continued from its weekend slide with another drop today, currently down 5% at the time of writing. Given Musk’s apparent influence on markets, some insist he exercises more restraint on social media.

Tesla Has Not Dumped Its Bitcoin

Last week, the Tesla boss announced his firm would no longer accept Bitcoin as payment for its EVs. The reason he gave was a growing concern about the use of highly polluting coal by miners.

This coincided with a mass sell-off in which Bitcoin was hit particularly hard, closing the day down 13% to $49.5k.

Today, Musk tweeted that Bitcoin is highly centralized due to the small number of mining pools that control the network. He maintains that coal is a significant power source for miners, despite counter claims that the network runs mostly on renewable sources.

“A single coal mine in Xinjiang flooded, almost killing miners, and Bitcoin hash rate dropped 35%. Sound decentralized to you?”

In amongst the responses, @CryptoWhale suggested that Tesla will sell their Bitcoin holdings. Adding that, if that happened, Bitcoiners would only have themselves to blame. He was referring to the outpouring of hate directed at Musk.

Musk replied to the tweet with a response of “Indeed.” Some publications interpreted this as confirmation that Musk had already dumped his Bitcoin holdings.

But in a semblance of grace, Musk put the record straight by saying Tesla has not dumped its BTC holdings.

“To clarify speculation, Tesla has not sold any Bitcoin.”

However, with everything that has gone on since last week, is it only a matter of time before Tesla sells up?

Musk Should Be Aware Of His Influence In Moving Markets

Key crypto figures have rallied together in support of Bitcoin. Michael Saylor announced a $15 million BTC buy adding to MicroStrategy’s already substantial war chest, while Jack Dorsey tweeted a message of support in improving its green credentials.

However, @PlanB took a less nuanced approach by accused Musk of deliberating trying to destroy Bitcoin. The comment came in a poll asking his followers whether Musk has derailed Bitcoin from meeting expectations per the stock-to-flow model (S2F).

S2F refers to a predictive model based on scarcity over time. PlanB, who adapted it for Bitcoin use, puts the price of BTC at a minimum of $100,000 by year-end.

The Managing Partner and Co-founder of Nexo, Antoni Trenchev, said Musk should “wake up” to his influence in moving markets.

“He has to wake up to the reality that with his following, even single-worded tweets can move markets.”

But as some would suggest, he is already well aware of his clout in that regard.

Bitcoin daily chart YTD

Source: BTCUSD on TradingView.com

Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://bitcoinist.com/speculation-tesla-dumped-its-bitcoin-holdings-denied-by-musk/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=speculation-tesla-dumped-its-bitcoin-holdings-denied-by-musk

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Cardano, Ethereum, Polkadot Price Analysis: 17 May

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Cardano could witness an extended rally if losses are maintained at $2.17. Ethereum broke south from a descending triangle and lost a key support region at $3,620. Finally, Polkadot was in danger of a sharp sell-off in case of a break below $38.5.

Cardano [ADA]

Source: ADA/USD, TradingView

Volumes on Cardano took a dip over the last 24 hours as buying activity came to a halt. After an impressive run that saw ADA post weekly gains of 22%, a correction had finally hit the market. A fall of 8% dragged ADA towards a newly discovered support zone at $2.17. A stronger support area lay between $1.82-1.48 and even clashed with the 20-SMA (blue). This confluence between the moving average and support zones would see a re-emergence of buyers should another dip take place.

Post the pullback, ADA presented the next target at $2.50. This psychological level could be snapped during the current bull run if buyers trimmed losses at $2.17. RSI moved south from the overbought zone but would likely stay in bullish territory above 55. ADX rose north of 32 and highlighted a strong trend in the market.

Ethereum [ETH]

Source: ETH/USD, TradingView

The more price-sensitive 4-hour timeframe highlighted certain bearish conditions in the Ethereum market that were hard to overlook. A descending triangle breakdown showed losses of 11% from the bottom trendline. This trendline also represented a strong defensive point at $3,620 and a southbound move saw extended losses up to $3,200. A green candlestick did indicate some bullish response and a rise above $3,620 could initiate a recovery towards $3,800.

Lower lows on RSI indicated weakening and confirmed ETH’s short-term bearish movement. Awesome Oscillator highlighted profit-taking as selling pressure was on the up. In case of further losses, 200-SMA around $3,000 could form another defensive barrier. Alternatively, the level around $3,800 saw some interplay between the 20-SMA (blue) and 50-SMA (yellow) and reclaiming this could trigger another bull run.

Polkadot [DOT]

Source: DOT/USD, TradingView

The formation of three candlesticks or ‘three black crows’ following an uptrend highlighted a strong shift of dynamics for Polkadot. Sharp bearish action dragged DOT below multiple support levels mentioned in a previous analysis. However, the daily timeframe outlined another buy zone at $38.5- a region that coincided with the 20-SMA and 50-SMA.

A break below this critical point could lead to an extended sell-off all the way towards $21.6 and 200-SMA (green). Conversely, a break above $44.5-$48 resistance could initiate a price hike. A bearish crossover in Stochastic RSI thwarted chances of a favorable outcome. Squeeze Momentum Indicator noted weakening buying pressure and a move below half-line would present sell signals.


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Coinsmart. Beste Bitcoin-Börse in Europa
Source: https://ambcrypto.com/cardano-ethereum-polkadot-price-analysis-17-may

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