Satish Kumbhani, who is accused of scamming people out of $2.4bn in a cryptocurrency Ponzi scheme, has disappeared while evading an American watchdog, a court was told this week.
The BitConnect founder fled his home nation of India and went to ground in another country as the US Securities and Exchange Commission sought to serve a civil fraud lawsuit on him regarding the alleged scam, it is claimed.
“In October 2021, the commission learned that Kumbhani has likely relocated from India to an unknown address in a different foreign country,” Richard Primoff, general attorney at the SEC, said in a letter [PDF] to US federal district Judge John Koeltl on Monday.
In September, the regulator claimed BitConnect defrauded folks out of billions of dollars by running a Ponzi-like scheme that promised financial returns of up to 40 per cent per month all thanks to its automated crypto-trading bot.
Instead, people’s digital funds were allegedly secretly pocketed by Kumbhani and his associate Glenn Arcaro, who last year pleaded guilty to conspiring to cheat Bitconnect investors. Arcaro faces up to 20 years behind bars. Kumbhani, however, is still at large.