Missing ICO Funds and Censorship – the Substratum Saga Continues

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Substratum’s difficult winter took another turn yesterday, when a series of tweets from crypto writer Brian Li highlighted inconsistencies in the projects ICO accounts, dubious behavior from the CEO, and leveled accusations of censorship from Substratum admins in the project’s community channels. Li’s accusations come only three weeks after Substratum’s CEO Justin Tabb admitted the company was day trading ICO funds in order to try and increase the amount of ETH they had available.

Substratum’s Extra ICO funds – Missing, Presumed Spent

Li’s accusations center around Substratum’s ICO and in particular the money received over and above the hard cap. Li alleges, with links to the relevant wallets and transactions on the blockchain, that Substratum received more Ethereum in the ICO than the whitepaper outlined, 1,142 more to be precise.

This extra ETH would turn out to be worth just over $1.3 million a few months after the ICO was completed. Li also claims that Substratum received 2.5 Bitcoin, 702 Bitcoin Cash, and 35 Litecoin over and above the ICO total without stating where these extra funds went. He then questions how Tabb was able to afford a $400,000 house and some expensive “toys” in October 2017 after the ICO completed but before the bull run really took off, making the token 640% more valuable three months later.

Adding Fuel to the Fire

As if Li’s claims weren’t damaging enough, what follows adds more fuel to the fire. Commenters to his Twitter stream state that even raising the topic of the extra funds in the online social groups warrants an instant ban, citing the reasoning that “the team doesn’t’ respond to lies”, which merely leaves Li’s claims, and the accompanying transactions on the blockchain, unexplained.

One commenter states that he was supposed to win a Ledger Nano for winning a t-shirt design competition, when all he received was the t-shirt. Further comments reveal non-disclosure of receipts following a $5 million fundraiser for Florida hurricane victims. Add in the 100,000 SUB tokens given to popular YouTube influencer Nicholas Merten (DataDash) to promote the project, which he did not disclose then allegedly lost, and it’s hard to shake the notion that something isn’t right at Substratum towers.

It could be, as the CMO has said in the only response so far “smoke and mirrors” on the part of Li. But, the longer the Ethereum transactions Li links to and the allegations that go with them remain unanswered the longer such rumors will persist, ultimately to the project’s detriment.