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Former Deutsche Bank Investment Banker Set to Plead Guilty in Cryptocurrency Fraud Case

CryptoFormer Deutsche Bank Investment Banker Set to Plead Guilty in Cryptocurrency Fraud Case

Former Deutsche Bank investment banker Rashawn Russell, previously denying allegations of defrauding cryptocurrency investors, appears to be changing course and is expected to plead guilty to fraud charges, as per court records.

Russell was indicted in April by federal prosecutors in Brooklyn, New York, for allegedly deceiving investors with promises of “guaranteed returns.” After several postponements to allow for plea negotiations, US Magistrate Judge Sanket Bulsara ordered Russell to appear for a “change of plea” hearing on September 19, indicating his intention to plead guilty.

The case is part of the government’s efforts to combat cryptocurrency fraud. Russell had allegedly assured clients that their funds would be used for cryptocurrency investments, claiming he could generate returns of over 100%. However, prosecutors alleged that he falsified documents to present substantial liquidity and diverted much of the invested money for personal use, gambling, and repaying other investors.

Russell’s attorney, Karume James, declined to comment on the matter.

While the case did not implicate Deutsche Bank in any wrongdoing, the bank cooperated with law enforcement during the investigation. Additionally, Russell faced a lawsuit from the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), which accused him of defrauding retail investors through the “R3 Crypto Fund.” This fund accepted Bitcoin and purported to trade digital asset commodities for investors’ benefit, but most investors allegedly did not recover their investments.

Russell’s time awaiting trial has seen its share of issues. In June, prosecutors accused him of violating bond terms by frequenting gambling establishments and using others’ names to access credit cards and gaming websites. Subsequently, he was ordered to wear an electronic monitoring device, and his computer usage was monitored.

Rashawn Russell had worked at Deutsche Bank Securities Inc. from August 2018 to December 2021. The case is US v. Russell, 23-cr-152, US District Court, Eastern District of New York (Brooklyn).

By FCCT Editorial Team

Disclaimer: The views expressed in this article are independent views solely of the author(s) expressed in their private capacity.

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