Texas crypto Ponzi

SEC Puts a Stop to $12 Million Ponzi Scheme in Texas

06.10.2022 08:49 (Updated 07.10.2022 09:10)
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by Maksym Prykhodko
1 min read

After last month’s news of a notable crypto Ponzi scheme, here’s another such case. This time, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is after Mauricio Chavez and Giorgio Benvenuto, who are involved in fraud targeting the Latino community in Houston, Texas.

While Chavez has no experience with cryptocurrency, he has been teaching a class aimed at empowering Latin Americans by instructing them how to use crypto to gain wealth. As part of the scam, Chavez manipulated the students to invest with his bogus company, CryptoFX. Since 2020, he received more than $12 million from some 5,000 investors, including those found through the seminars’ referral program. Benvenuto contributed to the scam by luring in a wealthy investor.

Out of the $12 million, the con artists used $8 million for purchases, including cars, jewelry, and real estate. The rest of the money went into fake returns to CryptoFX investors.

Luckily, the SEC intervened. Chavez and Benvenuto will now need to pay back the money they’ve illegally acquired, as well as a civil penalty. In addition, they’re barred from ever being able to work as directors in a public company.

Author

  • Maksym has denied the existence of crypto as an asset for 3 years when he was working with standard financial instruments. Became Head of Treasury. Won the best bank employee award and left the bank for cryptocurrency exchange the next day. Got a second university degree, but that didn’t stop him from studying finance yet. Combines fiat and crypto experience to be as objective as possible in general matters. His dream is to be interviewed by Bloomberg.

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