A Swedish national charged with running an international scheme from Thailand that defrauded more than 3500 victims in 46 countries recently pled guilty in a US federal court, reports Finance Magnaets.
The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) accused the Swedish man, Roger Nils-Jonas Karlsson, and his company, Eastern Metal Securities (EMS), of engaging in a scheme that gathered more than $ 16 million in cryptocurrency. Karlsson created his scheme in late 2012 allegedly using two websites, www.hci25.com and www.easternmetalsecurities.com, to encourage victims to invest using cryptocurrencies in a ‘Pre Funded Reversed Pension Plan’.
Karlsson operated his scheme from Thailand, his country of residence, and used several aliases to mask his fraud including Steve Heyden, Euclid Deodoris, Joshua Millard, Lars Georgsson, Paramon Larasoft, and Kenth Westerberg.
According to documents submitted to the court, Karlsson solicited less experienced victims, in particular deaf and hard-of-hearing people, to buy phony investment plans for less than $ 100, promising a 450-fold return through an eventual payout of 1.15 kilograms of gold per share. He offered his victims risk-free investments through guaranteed and backed-up plans that at least double their invested capital.
Karlsson allegedly spent most of his victims’ money to pay for his personal expenses, including expensive homes and a resort in Thailand before being extradited to the US in 2019.
Karlsson pleaded guilty to securities fraud, wire fraud, and money laundering charges. If convicted on all counts, he could face up to 40 years in prison and a fine of $ 750,000.