$4B OneCoin scam co-founder pleads guilty, faces 60 years jail
OneCoin co-founder Karl Sebastian Greenwood pleaded guilty to charges of money laundering, wire fraud and wire fraud conspiracy for his role at the head of the multi-billion dollar fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme.

Karl Sebastian Greenwood, the co-founder of the multi-billion dollar fraudulent cryptocurrency scheme OneCoin has pleaded guilty to multiple charges brought forward by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) and faces a maximum of 60 years in prison.

The DOJ announced on Dec. 16 that Greenwood submitted a guilty plea in a Manhattan federal court to charges of wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy and money laundering conspiracy with each charge carrying a maximum potential sentence of 20 years in jail.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said Greenwood operated “one of the largest international fraud schemes ever perpetrated” and claimed he touted OneCoin as a “Bitcoin killer” when in reality the tokens were “entirely worthless.”

OneCoin was a Bulgarian company founded by Greenwood alongside “Cryptoqueen” Ruja Ignatova that marketed a cryptocurrency by the same name. Emails obtained by the DOJ between the two before its founding in 2014 allege the pair called it a “trashy coin.”

Outwardly it claimed to be a multi-level marketing firm with members gaining commissions for selling cryptocurrency packages apparently containing OneCoin and the ability to mine more. OneCoin could only be exchanged for fiat currency on the private Xcoinx exchange.

In reality, it was both a pyramid and a Ponzi scheme as investors could recruit others into the scheme without an actual product and later investors were paid with the money from earlier investors.

According to the DOJ Greenwood was earning around $21.2 million (€20 million) per month in his role as the “global master distributor” of the fraudulent crypto firm. Over $4 billion is believed to have been swindled by OneCoin from the three million people who invested in the packages.

Ignatova was placed on the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s top ten most wanted list in June for her role in the scheme. She remains at large and was last known to have traveled to Athens, Greece in Oct. 2017.

Williams said Greenwood’s plea “sends a clear message” the DOJ is “coming after all those who seek to exploit the cryptocurrency ecosystem through fraud, no matter how big or sophisticated you are.”

Greenwood is slated to be sentenced before District Judge Edgardo Ramos on Apr. 5, 2023.

Authorities elsewhere have charged those involved with OneCoin and Ignatova, with three associates facing charges in Germany over fraud and money laundering.

_____

Amazon’s new series ‘NFTMe’ explores NFT culture and disruption worldwide
NFTMe is streaming on Amazon Prime, initially broadcasting in the United States and the United Kingdom.

The capacity to digitally authenticate almost everything, and the possibility of monetizing in ways nobody could even imagine before. These are some of the ways that Amazon's new documentary series NFTMe introduces nonfungible tokens (NFTs).

The show features artists, collectors, and industry professionals across the world sharing their experiences with NFTs and how the merger between art and technology has positively affected their daily lives.

In six 30-minute episodes, NFTMe introduces 50 pioneers in the NFT space from four continents, including American singer Susaye Greene of The Supremes; Queen Diambi Kabatusuila of the Democratic Republic of the Congo; Refik Anadol, a digital artist for SpaceX and NASA; Peter Rafelson, a music producer for Madonna; and Cheryl Douglas of Portion, who launched NFT collections for the Black-Eyed Peas.

The first episode explores the NFT community and the journey of different people through digital culture, with leading influencers breaking down NFTs and blockchain technology, and the Congo's Queen Diambi describing how her tribes have a Web3 mindset. The second episode digs into how Refik Anadol is creating art with NASA and how Eminem's request from 20 years ago led to an NFT journey.

The following episodes explore how brands are connecting with NFTs to explore new audiences and generations, the social impact of digital transformation, tokenization in the music industry, metaverse disruption and NFTs' role in recognizing and giving voice to artists. Among the highlights is CrossTower co-founder Kristin Boggiano breaking down regulation's role in keeping the NFT's market on track in episode five.

Behind the documentary series are the film producer Tech Talk Media and award-winning director Jonny Caplan. The production started in 2019 and had to be adapted due to COVID-19 restrictions, "which included sending in A.I. robots equipped with LiDar sensors, enabling the director to remote move, direct, and communicate," Tech Talk said in the official announcement, adding that:

"NFTMe intends to be the MTV of NFTs, providing the default go-to for information on NFTs in a clear, understandable, and effective way, enabling viewers to absorb the plethora of terminology, diversity, and opportunity in the Web3 realm, whilst experiencing the culture, the mood, the style, and the energy."

NFTMe is streaming on Amazon Prime, initially in the United States and the United Kingdom. The series will roll out worldwide to more broadcasters in 2023, according to Tech Talk.

_____

How will ChatGPT affect the Web3 space? Industry answers
HashEx CEO Dmitry Mishunin believes that AI can potentially independently use vulnerabilities and loopholes to perform attacks by itself.

With the many possibilities opened by ChatGPT, executives within the Web3 space predicted how the artificial intelligence (AI) tool developed by OpenAI would make its impact on the industry.

From using the bot for smart contract auditing to enhancing user interactions with AI, various executives gave their thoughts on how the new AI tool will have an impact on the Web3 industry.

Dmitry Mishunin, the CEO of the smart contract auditing firm HashEx, believes that ChatGPT will have an influence on the security of smart contracts. Mishunin told Cointelegraph that while the future is unsure, it can go both ways. He explained that:

“AI algorithms can be so deeply integrated into a niche that they simply stop allowing smart contracts that have not passed verification for deployment."

Mishunin said that an outcome like this will be good for the long term because it will significantly reduce the number of hacks, positively affecting the entire industry. However, the executive believes that things also have the potential to go wrong in a dystopian fiction-like manner.

According to Mishunin, the AI can also potentially behave differently and independently use vulnerabilities and loopholes to perform the attacks by itself. This will allow it to learn and receive resources for further development.

On the other hand, XinFin senior advisor Doug Brooks also believes that ChatGPT has the potential to be used in the development and testing of smart contracts. However, Brooks believes that it would not have a direct impact. He told Cointelegraph that:

“This could potentially improve the efficiency and accuracy of the development process but it would necessarily not have a direct impact on the resulting smart contract. ”

Despite this, the executive believes that the tool will have an impact on user experience. Brooks mentioned that the AI can be used to provide a more intuitive method for interacting, potentially increasing Web3 adoption.

Meanwhile, Monica Oracova, the co-founder of the cybersecurity firm Naoris Protocol also provided her point of view on the topic. According to Oracova, in the short term, there could be a potential spike in breaches as the AI will be exposing vulnerabilities that need to be addressed. This will “illuminate where humans need to improve.” Oracova explained that:

“AI is not a human being. It will miss basic preconceptions, knowledge and subtleties that only humans see. It is a tool that will improve vulnerabilities that are coded in error by humans.”

Despite this, Oracova believes that the AI chatbot will be a “net positive” for the future of Web3. “It can be used positively within an enterprise's security and development workflow, which increases the defense capabilities above the current security standards,” she added.

_____

This Daily Dose was brought to you by Cointelegraph.

Share this post