The founder of a program called Bitcointopia for the sale of land in the US state of Nevada to Bitcoiners has admitted in a federal court that land was not intended for sale. He had previously been arrested by Localbitcoins for selling BTC to a covert investigator and pleaded guilty to running an unlicensed corporation.
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Bitcointopia founder admits fraud
Morgan Rockcoons, a former localbitcoins dealer previously arrested for selling BTC to a US federal agent, has reportedly been found guilty of committing a fraud that sells land he does not own.
Known as Bitcointopia, the system involved the sale of land in the Nevada desert, where rockcoons have advertised a vision of libertarians living together in cryptocurrency and with as few laws as possible. The Los Angeles Times reported that Rockcoons had pleaded guilty on Thursday in several federal courts in San Diego.
He sold land he never owned to investors.
Unlicensed money sender
Rockcoons, also known as Morgan Rockwell and Metaballo, pleaded guilty Thursday to running an unlicensed transfer business, the Los Angeles Times reported. He was arrested on February 9 last year for selling more than $ 10,000 worth of BTC to a covert US Homeland Security Investigations agent.
Under federal law, Bitcoin exchanges must be registered as money transfer companies with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network. They would have to carry out KYC and "report to the government all transactions over $ 10,000," the news agency said. Rockcoons faces up to 20 years in prison for fraud and up to five years in broadcasting fees.
The bitcopyopia scheme
When Rockcoons was released on bail for his arrest for selling BTC to a federal commissioner, he set up a real estate company called Bitcointopia. He applied for land in the Elko district of Nevada and sold 500 to 1,000 hectares of undeveloped land for 0.5 BTC per hectare. He promised "to build a city of the future around cryptocurrency, automation and technology. He was inspired by Walt Disney Tomorrowland, "described the Los Angeles Times.
In a blog post he wrote last May promoting the program, Rockcoons said, "The long-term goal is to create an organization and government that extends from that country to the Kuiper Belt and finally to the Oort Cloud can."
On November 13 last year, he tweeted that he had been arrested again and asked Bitcoiners to support him by appearing for his trial in January.
His approval of Thursday, which came about a month before the trial started, reveals that at least ten investors have bought land and suffered a loss of at least $ 45,600.
The Rockcoons owned less than 5 acres of land on two contiguous plots, prosecutors said. Much of the land in the area is actually owned by the federal government.
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Images courtesy of Shutterstock and Elko Convention and Visitors Authority.
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