N.Y. Man Arrested, Charged With Fraud for Alleged Role in $59M Crypto Pyramid Scheme

The FBI says Eddy Alexandre promised investors he could double their money with a “robo-adviser” – and then spent their money on luxury cars and business expenses.

May 12, 2022 at 9:44 p.m. UTC
Updated May 13, 2022 at 2:16 p.m. UTC

Cheyenne Ligon is a CoinDesk news reporter with a focus on crypto regulation and policy. She has no significant crypto holdings.

A New York man was arrested and charged with fraud on Thursday morning for his role in an alleged crypto investing scheme that the Federal Bureau of Investigation says duped investors out of $59 million.

Eddy Alexandre, 50, of Valley Stream, N.Y., is the CEO of EminiFX, a cryptocurrency and forex trading platform. Authorities say that beginning last September Alexandre founded and ran EminiFX and convinced “hundreds of individual investors” to invest with him.

According to Alexandre's social media profiles, he is a cybersecurity engineer with nearly 30 years of experience, most recently as a senior IT professional at WarnerMedia (WBD).

According to the criminal complaint, Alexandre told investors he could double their money within five months, promising 5% weekly returns he allegedly generated through secretive robo-advising technology.

Authorities claim Alexandre didn't invest the “vast majority of investor funds entrusted to him [and] sustained losses on the limited portion of funds that he did invest.”

He is accused of spending about $15 million of the investor funds on personal expenses, putting money in his personal bank accounts and spending about $170,000 on luxury vehicle purchases.

Investors were led to believe their accounts were growing between 5% and 10% each week with doctored account statements provided on EminiFX’s website, according to the FBI. Authorities say Alexandre told nervous investors that his company had “experienced traders” making investments on behalf of the customers, but never told them exactly what they were investing in.

Alexandre also spent customer funds on business expenses, including renting an office, holding a gala and hiring lawyers, according to the complaint. He allegedly used the office and other promotional events to find new investors, along with a multilevel marketing-style recruitment model.

Alexandre has been charged with one count each of commodities fraud and wire fraud. The charges carry a maximum sentence of 10 and 20 years in prison, respectively.

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Cheyenne Ligon is a CoinDesk news reporter with a focus on crypto regulation and policy. She has no significant crypto holdings.

Cheyenne Ligon is a CoinDesk news reporter with a focus on crypto regulation and policy. She has no significant crypto holdings.

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