Jack Abramoff has entered a plea agreement for his involvement in the alleged AML BitCoin ICO scam that has been accused of defrauding thousands of investors in 2018.
- The agreement, dated July 13, means Abramoff has pled guilty to charges of conspiring to commit wire fraud and to defraud investors.
- Abramoff was at the center of a lobbying scandal in 2005 where he overcharged clients millions and used funds to make illegal political donations. He pled guilty, served nearly four years and was released in 2010.
- In June 2017, Abramoff became marketing lead for the Las Vegas-based NAC Foundation to publicize the AML BitCoin initial coin offering (ICO).
- The AML BitCoin token was marketed as compliant with anti-money laundering (AML) and know-your-customer (KYC) regulations; the project also said governments and public agencies were planning on adopting it.
- Per the filing, Abramoff said he became aware that no public body was actually close to adopting AML BitCoin and that NAC Foundation CEO, Roland Marcus Andrade, had "inappropriately" taken $1 million from the project's funds.
- But Abramoff said he reached an understanding with Andrade and continued to publicize the project as well as solicit investors to purchase tokens.
- He claimed a promotion that claimed AML BitCoin's Super Bowl advertisement had been rejected by the NBC television network and the National Football League was false and misleading.
- Abramoff has yet to be sentenced; he faces up to five years in prison and a $250,000 penalty.
- Andrade was indicted last month on money laundering and wire fraud charges; he told CoinDesk he was the victim of government corruption.
See the full court transcript below:
The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.