Two Bitcoin (BTC) Solicitors Charged by US CFTC for Fraud

 In Bitcoin, Exchanges, Governments and Regulations

Both defendants misled investors and forged CFTC official documents, the regulator has claimed.

US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has filed a lawsuit against two Bitcoin (BTC) solicitors, Morgan Hunt, and Kim Hecroft, for alleged attempt to steal BTC coins from investors, the Commission said on Friday.

Hunt from Texas and Hecroft form Maryland misled public by claiming that they were successful traders and portfolio managers and that they could make significant profits for their clients. Both men offered trading services for products like leveraged or margined foreign currency contracts (forex), binary options, and diamonds if the investor gave their money in the form of Bitcoins.

 “In its continuing litigation, the CFTC seeks restitution to defrauded persons, disgorgement of ill-gotten gains, civil monetary penalties, permanent trading and registration bans, and a permanent injunction against further violations of the Commodity Exchange Act and CFTC Regulations, as charged,” the regulator said in a statement.

The defendants set up investment platforms, called Diamonds Trading Investment House and First Options Trading, respectively, and had been using Facebook and e-mails to target clients. The platforms have been operational since January 2017 and have had at least two victims.

Moreover, Hunt and Hecroft had allegedly stolen more money from investors by impersonating an CFTC investigators and forging the regulator’s official documents to claim that CFTC collects tax on BTC. The defendants had insisted that clients should pay these taxes to Diamonds Trading Investment House, and First Options Trading when deciding to withdrawal their Bitcoin funds.

 “Increased public awareness of the CFTC’s involvement in policing the virtual currency markets has, unfortunately, provided new opportunities for bad actors, said in the press release.

“The CFTC does not collect taxes. The CFTC is on guard against fraudsters who try to take advantage of the CFTC’s reputation in order to cheat customers, and will take swift action against such misconduct.”

Per US law, the federal Internal Revenue Service (IRS) or state tax collection agencies are the responsible bodies that oversee tax obligations including those for cryptocurrency-related activities.

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