In a New York district court, Eddy Alexandre, the CEO of a putative cryptocurrency trading platform known as EminiFX, pled guilty to commodities fraud. As part of his plea deal, he agreed to pay back millions of dollars to investors who had lost money due to his “cryptocurrency investment hoax.”
On February 10, the Department of Justice (DOJ) of the United States of America made the announcement that Alexandre had pleaded guilty to one count of commodities fraud. Alexandre will pay approximately $248 million in forfeiture in addition to restitution, the amount of which has not yet been determined.
In May, Alexandre was arrested and prosecuted for his part in EminiFX. He first pled not guilty to the charges, but on February 10 he changed his plea to guilty. He might get a term of up to ten years in jail if convicted.
Between approximately September 2021 and May 2022, Alexandre allegedly ran the crypto and forex trading platform and “solicited more than $248 million in investments from tens of thousands of individual investors,” as stated by Damian Williams, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York.
According to Williams, Alexandre claimed that EminiFX could provide “monthly returns of at least 5%,” but in fact, the CEO didn’t invest a “significant amount” of the money and “even utilized some funds for personal expenditures.” Williams alleged that Alexandre lied about EminiFX.
He promoted EminiFX as a platform for earning passive income by virtue of its use of a top-secret new technology for automating trading in crypto and foreign currencies, which allegedly “guaranteed” the returns on investment that were advertised.
Alexandre avoided answering the investors’ questions on the nature of the technology but assured them that they would see a return on their investments in just five months. Investors in the scam were given misleading information to the effect that they had obtained the promised 5% returns on their investments.
In point of fact, Alexandre lost tens of millions of dollars on the cash that he did invest; nevertheless, he did not make this information known to the investors.
He also transferred over 14.7 million dollars to his own personal bank account, spent approximately 155,000 dollars on the purchase of a BMW, and more than that amount on the monthly payments for a Mercedes-Benz.
Despite the fact that Alexandre committed fraud, he retained the support of a number of the investors in EminiFX.
According to a story published on the 10th of August by Bloomberg, a few individuals flew from outside the country to attend a plea hearing in August. One of Alexandre’s supporters said that the prosecution against him was racially motivated.
In addition to this, he is being sued in a separate civil case by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), which claims that Alexandre engaged in “fraudulent solicitation and misappropriation” in connection with cryptocurrency and foreign exchange trading.