OneCoin Trial Reveals Luxury London Home of Ruja Ignatova

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  • The former lawyer of OneCoin founder Dr Ruja Ignatova is on trial in Germany
  • Martin Breidenbach gave details of a €20 million London property purchase by Dr Ruja
  • Breidenbach is accused of money laundering on behalf of the OneCoin creator

The trial of Martin Breidenbach, the former lawyer for Dr Ruja Ignatova, the brains and face of the massive OneCoin scam, has revealed the founder’s expensive habits, and in particular her purchase of a luxury London property. Breidenbach is accused of money laundering after allegedly transferring €20 million ($23 million) to a London law firm to fund the purchase of the property, and some intriguing details of the OneCoin scammer’s life have been revealed.

Shell Companies Owned Dr Ruja’s Home

The lease for the property was signed in 2016 when European financial regulators were already aware of the OneCoin scam and had issued warnings about it. Just months previously, Dr Ruja had pleaded guilty to fraud and other charges in a German court following the bankruptcy of a metal factory in 2011 that she had owned and that left 150 people jobless.

It seems that this wasn’t widely known however, and although lawyers at Locke Lord, a U.S. law firm with a London office, did express concern about the source of the money, Dr Ruja’s companies passed the firm’s compliance checks and the property was signed. Dr Ruja was able to hide her ownership of the property through a trail of shelf companies being listed as owners.

OneCoin Founder Disappeared in October 2017

Dr Ruja only stayed in London briefly in 2016, despite OneCoin opening a London office, and never visited in 2017. She disappeared in October 2017 and has never been seen since, despite a BBC podcast investigation team looking for her. All told, OneCoin is thought to have raked in some €4bn from unsuspecting investors, making it one of the biggest cryptocurrency scams of all time.