Four leaders of the AirBit Club program have pleaded guilty to various crimes in the United States, linked to the Ponzi scheme that left hundreds of thousands of victims and several million dollars in losses before it was dismantled.
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As suggested by court documents, citizens Karina Chairez, Cecilia Millán, Jackie Aguilar and Scott Hughes, each signed a plea agreement with which they assume various crimes, several of them related to fraud, deception and money laundering.
Specifically, Karina Chairez pleaded guilty on January 31, 2023 to the crimes of intent and conspiracy to fraud and laundering of monetary instruments.
On February 8, it was the turn of the promoter of the project, Cecilia Millán, who accepted her guilt on the charges of conspiracy and fraud. A monetary judgment amounting to USD 3.2 million was issued against her, as part of compensation for the crimes committed. Furthermore, all of your rights, title and interest in AirBit are forfeited and turned over to the US courts.
The other promoter of the project, Jackie Aguilar, for her part, pleaded guilty on February 22, 2023 for the commission of intent and conspiracy to commit fraud. While Scott Hughes, who is the legal representative of AirBit Club, assumed responsibility for the crimes committed on March 2.
According to court case documentation, Hughes pleaded guilty to money laundering. This cost him a monetary judgment of USD 18.1 million, as well as the loss of his rights, title and interest in AirBit.
The leader and founder of AirBit Club, Renato Rodríguez, has a plea change hearing for March 8. In it, it is foreseeable that the businessman assumes the charges against him, following in the footsteps of the rest of his colleagues.
Nothing has been reported at the judicial level about the other founder of AirBit Club, Gutemberg Dos Santos. However, he has been in custody of the United States since December 2020, when he was extradited from Panama to North American soil.
A high impact scam
AirBit Club was a scheme based on alleged cryptocurrency investment and mining systems such as bitcoin (BTC), which had an impact mainly in Mexico and the United States. It was dismantled in August 2020, the United States Department of Justice reported at the time.
This case cost, in preliminary estimates, at least 20 million dollars to the victims, who fell into a ponzi scheme that was based on promising allegedly large profits in exchange for an investment in cryptocurrencies, as explained by those affected by the scam.
AirBit Club was created in 2015 by Renato Rodríguez and Gutemberg Dos Santos. In a short time, it was alerted to it and it came to be identified as an entity that could defraud on behalf of Bitcoin.
Now, with the capture of the ringleaders and their recent guilty pleas, a maxim is outlined among those affected: “justice takes time to arrive, but it arrives“, as they expressed it in 2020, when the fall of AirBit Club was reported.