NEW YORK (AP) — An Australian man pleaded guilty Thursday to securities fraud for cheating investors of over $90 million by squandering money they spent on his cryptocurrency fund, prosecutors said.
Stefan He Qin, 24, entered the plea to a single count of the fraud charge in Manhattan federal court. Authorities said the fraud occurred from 2017 to 2020 as Qin operated the fund titled Virgil Sigma.
“Stefan He Qin drained almost all of the assets from the $90 million cryptocurrency fund he owned, stealing investors’ money, spending it on indulgences and speculative personal investments, and lying to investors about the performance of the fund and what he had done with their money,” U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss said in a release.
She said Qin then tried to steal money from another fund he controlled to meet the redemption demands of the defrauded investors in the former fund.