Randall Crater, 51, of East Hampton, New York, was convicted this week of four counts of wire fraud and three counts of money laundering. The criminal founded the fraudulent My Big Coin cryptocurrency project, thanks to which he illegally enriched himself with 6 million dollars.
Crater will be sentenced on October 27. he faces up to 20 years in prison on each count of fraud, plus up to 10 years on each count of money laundering.
In 2013, a scammer set up a now-shuttered company in Las Vegas and began offering gullible citizens the chance to buy My Big Coin, a virtual currency that doesn’t actually exist. Digital “currencies” were held in company-provided online accounts that were to be used to purchase goods and services, as well as exchanged for other currencies.
Between 2014 and 2017, Crater and his subordinates assured investors that the My Big Coin cryptocurrency was backed by $300 million in gold, oil and “other assets.” Coin MasterCard. he could presumably pay by withdrawing the funds from the cryptocurrency account. Kreiter and his accomplices used social media, email and text messages to publicize the project.
In fact, there was no gold, no other assets, no partnership projects with MasterCard, and the fake cryptocurrency could not be used for any purpose; victims simply transferred their money to the scammers. According to the prosecution, Crater took more than $6 million from unsuspecting citizens and spent hundreds of thousands of dollars on art, jewelry and antiques, including acquiring a certain “rare stone” through a New York auction house. Lord and Guy for $87,008.
In January 2018, the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission formally accused Crater and My Big Coin of commodity fraud and filed civil lawsuits against the company’s CEO, John Roche, and two Crater “partners”, Mark Gillespie and Michael Kruger. A year later, Crater himself was arrested in Florida and charged criminally.