US Man Charged Over $25M Diamond Ponzi Scheme That Touted a Crypto Token

A man from Washington, D.C., has been charged with running a diamond investment scam with its own cryptocurrency, Argyle Coin.

AccessTimeIconSep 14, 2020 at 8:13 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 9:55 a.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global hub for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

A man from Washington, D.C., has been charged with running a diamond investment scam with its own cryptocurrency to fund a life of luxury.

  • Federal prosecutors in South Florida charged the man, Jose Angel Aman, with wire fraud on Friday.
  • Allegations include that Aman and his partners had solicited investors in the U.S. and Canada for a diamond investment scheme, saying he would buy rough-colored diamonds and cut, polish and resell them for profit.
  • Promoting the investment as high return and no risk, Aman said the scheme was backed by a $25 million inventory of diamonds, according to the allegations.
  • However, the prosecutors claim Aman "rarely" used investments to buy rough diamonds and never refined and resold them; the $25 million inventory was also an alleged falsehood.
  • Aman instead made supposed interest payments to earlier investors using newer investors' money and persuaded investors to roll over their investments by falsely claiming their investments were at full value.
  • Prosecutors allege that when the scheme, was approaching collapse, Aman launched a purported diamond-back cryptocurrency called Argyle Coin and further solicited investors.
  • Again, money from later investors was allegedly used to play "interest" to earlier investors.
  • The schemes fleeced "hundreds" of investors for over $25 million, according to the charges, while Aman allegedly used some of the funds to "support his own lavish lifestyle."
  • Aman made his initial court appearance in West Palm Beach, Fla., last week.
  • Back in May, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission moved to halt the operations of Aman, Argyle coin and other entities he operated over similar allegations.


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.

Read more about