• The Commodity Futures Trading Commission won a record-breaking $3.4 billion penalty in a lawsuit against Cornelius Johannes Steynberg for his role in a fraudulent Bitcoin scheme.
• Steynberg, the CEO of Mirror Trading International Proprietary Limited (MTI), was ordered to pay $1.73 billion in restitution and a civil monetary penalty of an additional $1.73 billion.
• The CFTC said it is the “highest civil monetary penalty” ever ordered by them in any case and “the largest fraudulent scheme involving Bitcoin charged”.
CFTC Wins Record Penalty for Bitcoin Fraud Case
The Commodity Futures Trading Commission has won a record-breaking $3.4 billion civil monetary penalty against Cornelius Johannes Steynberg, CEO of Mirror Trading International Proprietary Limited (MTI). This is the highest civil monetary penalty ever ordered by them in any case and “the largest fraudulent scheme involving Bitcoin charged”.
Steynberg Ordered To Pay Restitution And Civil Monetary Penalty
Texas District Court Judge Lee Yeakel has ordered Steynberg to pay $1.73 billion in restitution to defrauded victims and an additional $1.73 billion civil monetary penalty as part of his role in perpetrating a fraudulent commodity pool scheme involving foreign currency transactions and Bitcoin from May 2018 to March 2021.
Fraudulent Scheme Involved Acceptance Of At Least 29,421 BTC
According to the April 27 order, Steynberg accepted at least 29,421 BTC valued more than $1.7 billion at the time — but currently worth approximately $867 million — from 23,000 individuals in the U.S., as well as globally throughout this period of time as part of this fraudulent multilevel marketing scheme soliciting funds for participation in an unregistered commodity pool.
Steynberg Liable For Multiple Violations
As head of MTI,Steynberg was found liable for fraud in connection with retail foreign currency transactions, fraud by an associated person of a commodity pool operator (CPO), registration violations and failure to comply with CPO regulations due to misappropriation of all bitcoin accepted from pool participants during this period of time..
Permanent Ban From Commodities Industry Imposed On Steynberg
In addition to paying these hefty fines,Steynberg is permanently prohibited from engaging or participating “in any activities relating