OneCoin try to extort German cryptocurrency blogger
The news of Germany’s top financial regulator deeming OneCoin illegal has sent shock waves through the OneCoin affiliate base.
This has OneCoin management spooked, with the latest ploy a desperate bid to have independent coverage of the ban removed from the internet.
As a number of publications were, Coinspondent closely followed the German regulatory crackdown on OneCoin.
Able to reach a core audience of German readership and the wider cryptocurrency audience, OneCoin identified Coinspondent’s reporting of developments as a major threat to their business model.
Over the last week Coinspondent was sent two letters from two separate law firms, demanding he “pay up, or else”.
The first letter was sent on April 25th and takes issue with Coinspondent’s article “Bafin prohibit OneCoin in Germany”.
Claiming to represent “the legal interests of OneCoin LTD”, the law firm Schulenberg & Schenk claim Coinspondent’s reporting of Bafin’s OneCoin ban is “false facts”.
Our client is neither forbidden in Germany nor has BaFin interfered with their business in Germany.
Also the facts do not correspond with the allegations that alleged investors were preyed on and each day they lost about one million Euro.
According to BaFin there are some 25,000 OneCoin victims in Germany, with combined losses of over $425 million dollars.
All nonsense apparently, according to OneCoin’s lawyers.
Without providing any proof, Schulenberg & Schenk insist OneCoin is a real cryptocurrency based on a blockchain. They also deny OneCoin is part of an organized crime racket.
Along with removal of Coinspondent’s coverage of BaFin’s OneCoin ban, Schulenberg & Schenk are demanding payment of €1440.40 EUR.
If Coinspondent don’t pay up by May 9th, OneCoin are threatening to take the matter to court.
The second legal letter is from the firm Lampmann, Haberkamm & Rosenbaum and dated April 26th.
Lampmann, Haberkamm & Rosenbaum claim Bafin’s OneCoin ban is “unlawful and already the subject of legal proceedings”.
OneCoin are going to take on Germany’s largest financial regulator? Ho ho ho!
Obviously Lampmann, Haberkamm & Rosenbaum fail to provide any case numbers or evidence OneCoin are challenging BaFin’s decision, beyond shaking down independent publications for money.
The law firm is upset that Coinspondent’s articles covering Bafin’s announcements “leave no room for the assessment that the process is in the preliminary stages”.
How that changes BaFin banning OneCoin in Germany, who knows.
Surely if OneCoin manage to legalize Ponzi schemes in Germany and overturn BaFin’s decision, Coinspondent (as well as BehindMLM) would be quick to cover it.
Lampmann, Haberkamm & Rosenbaum meanwhile claim merely reporting on BaFin’s current announcements is “unlawful”, and demands Coinspondent remove all coverage.
Amusingly, Lampmann, Haberkamm & Rosenbaum go on to state they welcome criticism of OneCoin, but then also trot out a list of articles critical of OneCoin they claim various German publishers have removed at their behest.
Noticeably absent from the list are any major news publications covering the BaFin ban.
The law firm does claim “court proceedings” have been initiated against other publications, but again provides no evidence.
As a precautionary measure, Coinspondent have taken down their coverage of Bafin’s OneCoin ban.
The author of the blog is currently mulling whether to leave it at that and stop reporting on OneCoin (and pay the €1440.40 EUR extortion fee), or file a lawsuit against OneCoin and go on the offensive.
If I may, from one publisher to another, offer a third solution?
Call OneCoin’s bluff and send them a copy of BaFin’s April 28th crystal clear ban of OneCoin in Germany.
OneCoin are of course free to challenge BaFin in court, but that will see them forced to open up their books to the regulator – which obviously isn’t going to happen.
Reporting on BaFin’s public announcements isn’t “unlawful”. Nor is it unlawful to see the regulatory ban within the context of OneCoin’s fraudulent business model.
I’m not a lawyer, but it seems preposterous that a German court would rule otherwise.
Let’s face it. The money to pay affiliates has run out and regulators all over the world are taking similar action to BaFin. If the London police pull the trigger over the next few months OneCoin is over.
This isn’t a company you should be taking legal threats from seriously.
Update 1st September 2018 – As per an August 31st update from Coinspondent, a hearing for the case was recently held.
I can not reveal any details, as there are still legal deadlines. Only this much: If the decision made yesterday will be final and final, I am very satisfied.
Full details are expected in October. Sounds however like common-sense has prevailed and reporting on the facts isn’t “unlawful”.