Israel police goes after business magnate for $290 mln crypto scam
- Hogeg raised these funds across the world during 2017-18 under the guise of funding four crypto ventures.
- Police charged him with fraud, money laundering, tax violations, and sexual offences.
Israeli police have accused leading entrepreneur Moshe Hogeg and his associates of defrauding investors of $290 million in a crypto scam, the Times of Israel reported on 23 August.
According to the police, Hogeg raised a large sum of money from investors across the world, including Israel nationals, during 2017-18 under the guise of funding four crypto ventures.
These projects were never realized. Instead, Hogeg used these funds for his personal expenses.
Police interviewed around 180 people involved in the crypto scam. The authorities have discovered 900 items of evidence, funds, and property.
Police have charged Hogeg with a number of offences after completing their investigation into the crypto scam over two years. The charges include aggravated fraud, unauthorized theft, falsification of corporate documents, forgery, money laundering, tax violations, and sexual crimes.
The police authorities have sent his cases to prosecutors for review. Police have also charged other suspects with a range of offenses.
A long chase to charge the business magnate
Hogeg previously worked on a project with blockchain-based mobile phone venture Sirin Labs. The project even hired one of the world’s leading football players, Leo Messi, as its brand ambassador.
Later, Hong Kong-based mobile phone manufacturer Foxconn sued Hogeg in 2020 for nearly $6 million over non-payment of manufacturing bills. Sirin Labs still remains operational.
Hogeg’s latest crypto participation appears to be with Tomi, a Web3 startup focusing on decentralization and free expression. Hogeg claims to be a cofounder of Tomi and said he would “remain an advisor and investor.”
Police had earlier arrested the entrepreneur in 2021 on the suspicion of fraud and sex offences. He was placed under house arrest a month later.
The business magnate has denied all of the charges leveled against him now, including those related to crypto scam. He claimed that he was subjected to police cruelty during detention.