The market for the initial placement of coins is saturated with fraudulent projects, which initially promise to "change the world", but after receiving funding, they cease to be in touch. There are, of course, those who simply are not able to fulfill their obligations, and the product for which investor money has been spent is not necessary for anyone. Some very blatant scammers who remove their site, leave no censorship on it, as was the case with the Lithuanian startup who wanted to "bring the blockchain" into the fruit and vegetable industry.
article, we will talk about what you need to do to get your money back if you have already invested in a fraudulent ICO.
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- Is it true that you return your money if you have invested in an ICO scam?
- What to do in the beginning? Collect evidence
- Who to sue?
- What do you need to know about the court?
As practice shows, surely, there have been similar precedents in history, but to a greater extent they only affect the United States and Canada. For example, in 2017, at the initiative of the SEC, the founders of the Munchen scam project returned $ 15 million to their depositors. Another example, the organizer of the criptostart PlexCoin Dominic Lacroix was arrested, sentenced to 8 weeks in prison and fined personally for 10 thousand, and his company for 100 thousand dollars.
The Securities Commission is actively working in this field, but unfortunately outside of North America it is not yet particularly developed. For example, ICO scammers have not yet been caught in CIS countries. But despite this, there is still the possibility of getting your money back. Please read this material to know what to do in such an unpleasant situation.
So, unfortunately, you've already realized that you gave your money to criminals, what should you do? To begin with, you need to collect as many proofs as possible:
- matching screenshots in Telegram or other messengers;
- copies of e-mails;
- white paper and road map of the project.
If you have personally spoken on the phone with the organizers of the ICO you must contact the supplier to make a print of your calls. If you have a personal contact in offline mode, you need to specify the place, date and time of the meeting. If this happened in a public place, it is likely that the face of the scammer has entered the surveillance cameras.
The overwhelming number of ICO projects has a similar structure. Often, to start the production and sale of digital tokens, the organizers register a special issuing company. As a rule, they are created in the Seychelles or the Cayman Islands or in Estonia and Singapore. Unfortunately, finding data on an issuing company is a rather difficult task. The only place where you can find out which legal entity is responsible for this project is an agreement to sell tokens or Token Sale Agreement .
But it is worth noting that a registered company can not conduct business, and it is even more complicated to find information about who is leading it compared to an issuing company. Sure, you can try searching for traces through the project team, but if the ICO organizers have created a scam from the beginning, then they have hardly mentioned their real names there. Most likely, the charges will have to be debited to the issuing company.
The good news for the fraudulent ICO victims is that there are virtually no "loopholes" in the world where financial criminals can remain in the shadows. Banks from different countries of the world cooperate with each other and transmit information on the movement of money; therefore, hiding a large amount of stolen money every year becomes more difficult.
The bad news is that defrauded investors can seek financial compensation only through local courts in the countries where the issuing company is registered. Litigation is not a cheap pleasure:
- Estonia – 7-8 thousand euros
- Cayman Islands – 30-50 thousand dollars
- Singapore – 80-130 thousand dollars
These figures do not include government taxes and other related costs. In order to "fight for the value of blood", the amount of funds lost must significantly exceed the costs associated with the court. An alternative way to save money in this matter is to file a collective complaint. For this it is necessary to collect in one place a certain number of the same deceived investors and divide the costs equally.
There are many fraud projects on the ICO market, so it is quite difficult for an investor who is starting to not get bogged down for criminals. But even if you have become a victim of scammers, even if low, but there are still opportunities to get back your investments. You need to adapt to a long lawsuit, which will also require financial injections on your side.
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