Randall Crater, the creator of “My Big Coin,” was given a 100-month prison term and forced to reimburse his victims for more than $7.6 million.
On January 31, the United States Department of Justice said that Massachusetts-based United States District Court Judge Denise Casper had sentenced Crater.
The punishment was given after a federal jury found Crater guilty on July 21 of four charges of wire fraud, three counts of making illegal financial transactions, and one count of running an unregistered money-transfer operation.
Crater established My Big Coin in 2013 and deceitfully advertised it as a cryptocurrency payment service, enticing victims between 2014 and 2017.
Crater said that My Big Coin has a connection with Mastercard and that its coins were fully operational cryptocurrencies backed by gold.
Additionally, Crater promoted the “My Big Coin Exchange,” which was promoted as a cryptocurrency exchange where coins could be exchanged for dollars and other fiat money.
The $7.6 million that Crater and his marketing team were able to secure was largely used to purchase a home, multiple vehicles, and more than $1 million in of antiques, artwork, and jewelry.
According to U.S. Attorney Rachael Rollins, Crater’s victims suffered significant emotional distress and financial hardship as a result of the damage he caused:
“For nearly four years, Mr. Crater perpetrated a brazen fraud scheme that preyed on investors and customers who put their faith in him and his fake business, resulting in victim losses of over $7.5 million.”
“His lies and deception inflicted real trauma, pain and hardship on the lives of 55 individual victims and their families who funneled their money into bank accounts Mr. Crater controlled and used to finance his extravagant lifestyle,” she added.
Crater maintained his innocence even after being found guilty, stating in a YouTube video from October 21 that there was a My Big Coin credit card and that an investor had admitted under oath to using the card several times.
Crater has been the subject of legal action since September 25, 2018, when Massachusetts District Court Judge Rya Zobel, who is since retired, rejected a motion to dismiss a complaint brought by the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC).
On February 19, 2019, the Department of Justice formally brought criminal charges against Crater.
Crater will be under supervision over the following three years after serving 8 years in prison.