OneCoin certified illegal in Portugal
Although a bit late to the game, yesterday Portugal’s top financial regulator issued a OneCoin investment warning.
Banco de Portugal’s November 27th warning targets OneLife Network Limited, OneCoin Limited and One Network Services.
Banco de Portugal warns that OneLife Network Limited (Belize), OneCoin Limited (Dubai) and One Network Services Ltd (Bulgaria), acting in their own name or through third parties, under the trading name “Onecoin” and “Onelife”, are not on this date and never were authorized – in Portuguese territory – to accept deposits or other repayable funds (nor to carry on any other financial activity subject to the supervision of Banco de Portugal).
As per Portugese law, only company’s authorized by Banco de Portugal are legally able to “accept deposits or other repayable funds” nationally.
This means OneCoin is and has been operating illegally in Portugal since inception.
The latest blow to OneCoin’s Ponzi empire comes at a time of turmoil. Other than “hodling” onto their OneCoin points, affiliates appear to have no idea how to recover their losses.
Promise after promise is made at OneCoin events, with the game-plan and business model changing every few weeks.
Following the abrupt departure of OneCoin CEO Pierre Arens, nobody from OneCoin management has stepped up to face investors.
After her own disappearance some months back, Founder Ruja Ignatova remains in hiding.
Last weekend OneCoin Master Distributor Sebastian Greenwood spoke at a OneLife event in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
After coming up with excuses as to why affiliates can’t withdraw invested funds for 25 minutes, Greenwood stated “it felt like (he) spoke at a funeral”.
Mr. Greenwood speaking at the Malaysian Event and commenting that it “Felt like I was speaking at a funeral” is interesting and very EERY… .
Its like speaking about the many “LOSSES” that are about to happen…..BEFORE they happen. Lets just hope that people dont literally take their lives when they figure out this horrific nightmare they are in.
OneCoin doesn’t offer deposit accounts by any stretch of the imagination though.
Educational packages aren’t deposit accounts – you pay your money and you get plagiarised PDFs, you can’t withdraw the money you spent on them. Nor is cryptocurrency – you sell your “free” tokens/coins/certificates on the open market in
2016 20172018, the market is responsible for repaying your money, not OneCoin.
A deposit account is a very specific type of financial instrument and OneCoin can quite accurately say they don’t offer them.
This is a Rhodesia Solution from the Portugese regulator – when the scheme collapses, they can say to investors “well we did warn you”, but it absolves them from taking any enforcement action because OneCoin aren’t actually doing anything illegal according to the terms of their warning.
If OneCoin is engaging in illegal activity it would come under giving investment advice when unauthorised or soliciting investment from unsophisticated investors (assuming either of those things are illegal in Portugal), but the Portugese regulator has very deliberately not gone there.
Better late than never, but probably most victims have already been made yet all over Europe.
The only interesting thing left for this story is how the last big leaders (Igor Alberts & Andreaa Cimbala, Jose Gordo, Greenwood and Wahlros) will leave the stage.
Glad to see that the Portuguese authorities have issued the warning even if there are caveats associated -see 2 above.
I am separately aware that Oc matters have been considered and referred to the criminal authorities in Portugal so hopefully there will be a few knocks on the door. I presume they will have lists of who attended the Lisbon event about a month ago/
The Irish Pioneer -John Barrett -was in the background organising the event and also event training.
He fled from Ireland after being doorstepped by the newspapers over here and is trying to set himself up as a European leader–great timing actually as many of the uplines are busy distancing themselves from the Scheme. THe resultant slack is being picked up by the vesiges/dredges that are left
Where have Pehr Karlsson’s lines gone? Where will Kari’s lines go and has Peter Shaw left yet.
If any of you know John Barrett’s Portuguese address let the CMVM know in Portugal-they have plenty of background on him.
Peter Shaw is at least on the “Mastermind”list Bangkok.Lets if the mind shows up.
Who said anything about “deposit accounts”?
OneCoin solicit investment, which requires affiliates to deposit funds with the company. As per Portugese law, they are not authorized to solicit Portuguese residents for investment (no matter what they call it).
That’s the point! It was the same in Germany and Italy, calling something an educational package but in the same time advertise it as an investment with huge returns, cannot be legal in most countries of the world.
Strategy typical for these types of scams. To confuse the audience what they are actually “selling” and what they do with money from affiliates. And then use it as a pseudo-compliance when it comes to run away…
Example – entry fee for scam Kairos:
“You invest in the technology” – no, nothing has been developed
“You purchase software services” – services available fee elsewhere
“Services are free of charge, but you have to pay the “guarantee payment” (deposit). Required by the company to keep you motivated and engaged in a collaboration.
The guarantee payment is “refundable (you will get it within 5 months via your “salary”) and is saved safe on the deposit account” – no, that was not true. Entry fee was of course shuffled between admins and affiliates.
“60% of Guarantee fee is used for marketing (bonuses of other affiliates), 40% is for company development” – here we go, this might be a realistic estimation of % which were affiliates screwed off.
Onecoin’s dead baby, Onecoin’s dead.
The Portugese regulator. “…are not on this date and never were authorized – in Portuguese territory – to accept deposits or other repayable funds”
That’s a vaguer use of the word “deposit” than the regulator is using. The regulator is referring specifically to cash deposit accounts, as you can gather from the text immediately after: “or other repayable funds”. In other words, cash accounts where the deposit holder is entitled to have their funds repaid on demand or according to the terms of the account. That clearly doesn’t apply to OneCoin where the funds have been used to purchase “educational packages” and are not repayable.
Which Portugese law is that? Portugal follows EU law (MIFID) which is that certain packaged retail investments can only be offered with authorisation. OneCoin is not a packaged retail investment.
Sorry Oz, you can’t take the SEC’s rules on unregistered securities and shoehorn them into EU MIFID law. Offering unregistered securities may be illegal in the USA but it’s not in most of the rest of the capitalist world. US financial regulation is exceptional.
If the Portugese regulator wanted to do something about OneCoin they’d’ve gone after them for Article 4 (1)(c) of the Legal Framework – “payment services, as defined in Article 4 of the legal framework governing payment services and electronic money” which ISTR is what the German regulator did. But they didn’t. The Portugese are on their own.
We need to avoid fuelling the myth that financial regulators (with the possible exception of the SEC) give two shits about whether you hand over your life savings to an unregulated investment scam. The clue is in the word “unregulated”.
How did you get “deposit accounts” from not being able to accept deposits???
I’m assuming “deposit accounts” has a legal definition in the EU? Regardless, soliciting investment/deposits is pretty self-explanatory within the context of OneCoin’s business model.
You’d have to ask Banco de Portugal.
You realize you just described an unregistered securities offering right?
By all means call it whatever you want but we’re talking about the same thing; an unauthorized illegal investment opportunity.
My take on EU securities regulation for what it’s worth is a country will call out a scam and then proceed to do nothing meaningful about it. Anything beyond that you’ve read into yourself.
“That clearly doesn’t apply to OneCoin where the funds have been used to purchase “educational packages” and are not repayable.”
Didn’t we have this point yet? You can call a ponzi scheme what you like, it will always be a ponzi scheme.
No. All packaged retail investments are securities but not all securities are packaged retail investments. Offering a security does not by itself require regulatory authorisation in the EU.
Unregulated. Not illegal. Not by the mere act of offering cryptocurrency or ROIs, anyway.
Obviously it’s illegal by virtue of being a pyramid scheme and a fraud but the issue we’re talking about is whether OneCoin can be shut down without proving whether it’s a pyramid scheme first.
Now that we agree on.
Awesome for packaged retail investments, which you’ve yourself admitted OneCoin isn’t (no idea why you brought them up).
As for “unregulated not illegal”, here again is what the Bank of Portugal stated:
Not authorized to accept deposits = an illegal securities offering. You’re splitting hairs here on terminology but it’s the same thing.
OneCoin has zero retail sales, everyone is an affiliate. But that’s besides the point. Securities or investment deposits are Ponzi fraud.
Before they shut down the internal withdrawal exchange you could sign up, invest and steal money without recruitment.
If a regulator goes after OneCoin the pyramid scheme has to be secondary to Ponzi fraud, which is securities fraud and brings up back to unregistered securities/accepting deposits.
It keeps going on allover the world, the warnings, the declarations, investigations…but actions almost second to none.
Wasn’t the UK police investigating since more than a year now? But these scammers keep growing, being promoted and stealing money allover.
If someone has those contacts of the investigating service in London send them to these guys here and make finally something happen like we had in India earlier on this year.
Head of investigation on OneCoin in UK for City of London police is Kieron Vaughn—00442076016821
John Barrett is in Glounthane, County Cork, Ireland and is now promoting another ponzi scheme and taking people’s savings.
I can’t understand how he is still getting away with this.
Karma comes after everyone eventually John.
@cryptokill @Tarrea @diamondmine
Hard to believe that John Barrett continues with MLM Ponzi Scams to this day.
Since OneCoin he has been pushing Cash FX and living in rented houses between West Cork and Portugal.
Amazingly Onecoin does now offer something that is absolutely regulated. They are not.
If you are thick enough, you can deposit cash with the company and earn an unrealistic rate of return. Yeah, sure you will.