EU passports are highly prized as they give their owners the right to travel, live, and work freely in all 27 members of the union. Unfortunately, some countries such as Cyprus and Malta sell citizenships and thus EU passports as part of investment programs for the sole benefit of these countries. Most recently, Al Jazeera has revealed that Cyprus is also offering its “Golden Passport” scheme to convicted criminals and money launderers. Now the EU Commission takes action to terminate this malicious approach.
The U.S. Prosecutors charge the BitMex founders Arthur Hayes, Benjamin Delo, Samuel Reed along with the senior manager Gregory Dwyer with (a) violating the Bank Secrecy Act and (b) conspiring to violate the Bank Secrecy Act, by willfully failing to establish, implement, and maintain an anti-money laundering (“AML”) program at the crypto exchange or BitMEX. The charges each carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison.
The Austrian FMA warns against Blackstone500 (www.blackstone500.com). It’s about time for law enforcement agencies in various EU jurisdictions to take action. In any case, the Leverate Financial Services Ltd which is regulated in Cyprus by CySEC should be approached to identify the beneficial owners and individuals behind PumaTS. The latter is a white label broker platform provider as well as a partner and client of Leverate and operates a vast scam broker network.
According to a report by Gerald Segal of FX News Group (FNG), the Spanish regulator CNMV is planning tough measures against regulated brokers to protect Spanish customers. Specifically, these are mainly CySEC regulated brokers who operate in Spain through the EU Passporting License. The CNMV measures are designed to prohibit the common illegal practices of many regulated brokers and their respective boiler rooms.
The EU member Cyprus and the Republic of Vanuatu have some things in common that they probably should not have in common. Apart from the fact that both are island states – Cyprus in the Mediterranean Sea and Vanuatu in the South Pacific Ocean – both are willing to sell citizenship and passports, register companies, and sell financial licenses.
For many years, the CySEC-regulated Leverate Financial Services Ltd has been operating an infrastructure and trading network used by dozens of scam brands, in addition to its own regulated broker brands. Leverate works together with PumaTS and provides its technology, infrastructure, and trading services to scam brokers such as CapitalFX. FinTelegram has carefully reviewed documentation that supports this allegation beyond any reasonable doubt.
FinTelegram already reported in detail a few weeks ago about the voluntary renouncement of its CySEC CIF license 207/13 and thus the withdrawal of the Cypriot Rodeler Ltd and its forex broker brand 24option. The pioneer among the EU forex brokers had paid tribute to the problems with the market situation and the regulators and voluntarily withdrew the CySEC license.
The Spanish financial market supervisory authority CNMV this week issued an investor warning against the unauthorized and thus illegally operating Forex broker DBFX Limited (www.dbfxtrades.com). According to information on the website, the company is registered in Vanuatu and is a subsidiary of the CySEC-registered investment company Belight Capital Group Ltd. The company’s license has been suspended in April 2020.
On June 1, 2020, the FCA suspended some investment companies regulated by CySEC for their unfair sales practices. These firms allegedly used unauthorized celebrity endorsements on social media as part of their marketing. One of these investment firms was Rodeler Ltd and its brand 24option. Just a few hours later, CySEC also temporarily suspended Rodeler Ltd and ordered them to take necessary actions in order to comply with regulatory provisions within one month. R.I.P Rodeler and 24option.
The difference between the US regulators and their EU counterparts could not be greater. While the SEC and CFTC have implemented whistleblower programs and act as the advocates of retail investors, the EU regulators leave the victims rather alone in the fight against scammers and online fraudsters.