Siblings Charged by SEC over $124M Crypto Scam Operations
The Securities and Exchange Commission has charged John and JonAtina (Tina) Barksdale for allegedly defrauding thousands of retail investors.
Through two unregistered fraudulent offerings, the siblings are reported to have scammed investors over $124 million.
- The Barksdales allegedly scammed the investors through ‘Ormeus Coin.’
- Barksdale's siblings even held roadshows to advertise their scam coin.
- SEC charged the siblings for violating federal security laws.
Crypto scams are frustratingly common nowadays. Every day sees the emergence of a new scam.
The Securities and Exchange Commission appears to be taking a more serious stance on Crypto scams. As shown by their recent interest in the Barksdale couple.
John and JonAtina (Tina) Barksdale were charged by the SEC for swindling thousands of investors. The siblings looted the investors for over $124 million. They achieved all of this through two unregistered security offerings, which were done using ‘Ormeus Coin.’
As per the reports by SEC, beginning from June 2017 to the present using a multi-level marketing program called Ormeus Global, the Barksdales sold subscriptions that included Ormeus Coin and investments in crypto trading programs.
To promote their scam projects, John held roadshows while Tina handled the social media activities, Youtube videos, and other promotions.
The siblings made false claims about Ormeus being backed by one of the most significant mining operations in the world. It was falsely claimed that Ormeus Coin had a $250 million crypto mining operation and that mining revenues ranged from $5.4 million to $8 million per month.
The SEC later brought all these false claims to light.
Manipulative tactics to back the Ormeus claims
The Barkdales used a public website to display the wallet of a third party showing more than $190 million in assets as of November 2021, even though Ormeus Coin wallets were worth significantly less at around $500,000.
The siblings made every tactical move to keep their fiction going. But all their efforts were in vain.
Melissa Hodgman, Associate Director of the SEC’s Division of Enforcement, said, "We allege that the Barksdales acted as modern-day snake-oil salesmen, using social media, promotional websites, and in-person roadshows to mislead retail investors for their own personal benefit."
U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York filed the lawsuit against the Barksdale family. The lawsuit seeks an injunction, disgorgement plus interest, as well as civil penalties.
Parallel to this, the U.S. Attorney’s Office unveiled criminal charges against John Barksdale.
The SEC cautions investors to be wary of potential investment scams and shady projects. With cryptocurrency’s growing adoption, potential scammers don’t leave room to escape.
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