OneCoin cryptoqueen named among Europe's most wanted fugitives


The founder of the OneCoin cryptocurrency was placed on the European law enforcement agency’s most wanted list for her role in the multibillion dollar fraud.

Ruja Ignatova, known as the so-called cryptoqueen, “is suspected of having prompted investors worldwide to invest in this actually worthless ‘currency’,” Europol said on its website. The agency is offering a 5 000 euro ($5,217) reward for information that will lead to the arrest of 41-year-old Ignatova.

OneCoin claimed to have more than 3 million members worldwide. Generating 3.4 billion euros in revenue from the fourth quarter of 2014 to the third quarter of 2016, it operated as a multilevel market network that paid commission to members worldwide for recruiting others, prosecutors told a US court in 2019.

The subject of a successful BBC podcast ‘The Missing Cryptoqueen’, Ignatova created OneCoin in 2014 in Sofia, Bulgaria, and headed the organisation until she vanished from the public eye in October 2017, according to prosecutors. Her brother, Konstantin Ignatov assumed the top leadership position in the middle of 2018, they said. He pleaded guilty to fraud and money laundering.