The Steinkeller brothers have delayed the Italian OneCoin criminal case.
At a hearing aimed at separating Ruja Ignatova’s case, the Steinkeller’s attorney raised an objection over wiretapping.
Ruja Ignatova, Aron, Christian and Stefan Steinkeller and ten OneCoin promoters, are defending a criminal case brought against them in Tyrol.
Ruja Ignatova disappeared in October 2017. Having not put in an appearance, Ignatova is being represented by a Public Defender.
Rather than hold up proceedings, the court intended to separate Ignatova’s case from the other defendants. A hearing on the matter was held on October 5th, at which the Steinkeller’s lawyer raised an objection.
The defense attorney pointed out that (Judge) Schönsberg approved wiretapping of OneCoin during the investigation phase. A clear incompatibility to decide on the admission of the indictment.
Apparently the same Judge approving the use of wiretapping by investigators and now hearing the case, constitutes a conflict of interest.
The end result is the Steinkellers have delayed proceedings for around six months.
Tageszeitung reports concern over charges against the Steinkellers approaching the statute of limitations.
Fraud charges against the Steinkellers and other promoters allege conduct dating back to 2017.
By the time Italian prosecutors took action, the statute of limitations on running a pyramid scheme had already expired. Prosecutors have pushed forward with general fraud charges, the statue of limitations of which is six years.
Italian prosecutors allege the Steinkellers and promoters who worked under them stole over $10 million from Italian investors.
Based on OneCoin being a $4 billion Ponzi scheme and the Steinkellers, at their peak, boasting of stealing $2.5 million a month through OneCoin, the actual figure is likely much higher.
In arguing his case at the Wednesday hearing, the Steinkellers’ attorney emphasized
that the Steinkeller brothers have withdrawn from the cryptocurrency business and are active abroad in other sectors of the financial sector.
By that the lawyer meant the Steinkeller brothers have fled to Dubai, from where they continue to scam consumers.
Dubai is the MLM scam capital of the world. The emirate does not regulate securities fraud and shelters criminals from authorities.
It is unclear whether the Steinkellers are persons of interest to US authorities.
The Steinkeller’s latest MLM crypto Ponzi scam is Metfi.
As reviewed by BehindMLM in July, MetFi pitches a 1000% ROI via investment in worthless NFTs.
MetFi is attached to the MFI shitcoin, which the Steinkellers keep propped up through wash trading.
Despite MFI having an artificial $7463 public trading value, the Ponzi scheme it’s attached to is in decline:
Needless to say MFI will tank the moment a significant withdrawal is processed.
Overall MetFI recruitment is down. The Steinkellers were pillaging Martinique, a small Caribbean island of just 376,000, however that appears to have collapsed. Thailand was also being pillaged but, like Martinique, also seems to have stalled.
As of September 2022, MetFi is now targeting France, Poland and Singapore.
Whether Italian authorities are eventually able to convict the Steinkeller brothers remains to be seen.