OneCoin compliance officer sentenced to 4 years in US

The Southern District of New York court has sentenced Irina Dilkinska to four years in prison for her role in the OneCoin scam and its associated cryptocurrency.

In addition to her prison sentence, Dilkinska is required to forfeit $111 million and will undergo one month of supervised release, as per the United States Department of Justice.

US federal prosecutors charged the Bulgarian woman after being extradited from Sofia earlier in 2023. She allegedly helped OneCoin operators to create shell companies in order to launder proceeds and manage property belonging to founder Ruja Ignatova.

Serving as the head of legal and compliance for OneCoin, Dilkinska engaged in facilitating money laundering and various financial crimes, including transferring $110 million of illicit OneCoin proceeds to a company in the Cayman Islands.

U.S. Attorney Damian Williams highlighted Dilkinska’s breach of ethical conduct, stating, “Irina Dilkinska’s involvement in the sprawling OneCoin pyramid scheme was a flagrant breach of conduct. Rather than upholding the law and embracing her position as the Head of Legal and Compliance, she facilitated and committed money laundering, aiding in the exploitation of millions of victims.”

Among other things, the former executive used a shell company that was falsely described as offering “proprietary consulting services, support and software solutions” that generated €200 million in 2015 through 2016, to disguise the transfer of millions of dollars as purported “investments” into Scott’s funds.

The DOJ’s statement disclosed that OneCoin attracted over 3 million participants, generating nearly $4.4 billion in sales from 2014 to 2016, with victims investing over $4 billion in total. US prosecutors said that once Irina learned of Mark Scott’s arrest, she destroyed incriminating documents and sent another co-conspirator incriminating messages.

Dilkinska pleaded guilty in November 2023 to charges including conspiracies of wire fraud and money laundering related to her activities within OneCoin.

The DOJ describes OneCoin as a global multi-level marketing or “pyramid scheme,” where earnings come from commissions on sales and recruitment of new members. OneCoin’s founders, Ruja Ignatova, known as “the Cryptoqueen,” and Karl Sebastian Greenwood, have faced severe legal consequences. Greenwood received a 20-year prison sentence and was fined $300 million after pleading guilty to wire fraud and money laundering.