A Serbian national has been extradited to the United States to face charges of defrauding investors out of more than $70 million through a cryptocurrency mining and binary options scam. Antonije Stojilkovic, 32, and six accomplices, who were all arrested between July and October 2020, faces up to 20 years in federal prison if convicted.
According to a statement from the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), Stojilkovic was nabbed in his home country after the country submitted a â€œprovisional arrest request on July 24, 2020. The statement adds that his removal â€œfrom Serbia to the Northern District of Texasâ€ was completed on On Feb. 4, 2021.
Alongside his six coconspirators, Stojilkovic is accused of targeting â€œinvestors around the globe â€“ including several in north Texas â€“ soliciting â€˜investmentsâ€™ in binary options and cryptocurrency mining.â€ The DOJ says the defendants, who used their home bases in China and Serbia, orchestrated the scam through â€œmore than 20 fraudulent investing platforms and â€œconcocted profiles.â€
Further, as the DOJ statement explains, Stojilkovic and the co-conspirators would project â€œtheir binary options platforms as the worldâ€™s market leader in binary options.â€ The accused also claimed to be â€œthe worldâ€™s market leaderâ€ in binary options with â€œan average payout of 80 percent, and promised 20 percent refunds on every lost trade.â€
Concerning the cryptocurrency mining side of the scam, the DOJ says:
No Trading Occurred
Meanwhile, in an effort to sell the scam to unsuspecting investors, Stojilkovic and his co-defendants â€œfabricated trading activity, withdrawal history, and wire receipts.â€ However, the investigators still found that â€œno actual trading had occurred.â€ Instead, investor funds were â€œused to cover defendantsâ€™ personal expenses, to pay commissions, and to further the scheme.â€
In the meantime, U.S. officials say Stojilkovicâ€™s arrest and extradition demonstrate law enforcementâ€™s ability to â€œinvestigate and dismantle these elaborate schemes.â€
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