John McAfee and his bodyguard Jimmy Gale Watson Jr were charged for a scheme to exploit McAfee’s large Twitter following by publicly touting cryptocurrency offerings and digital tokens that they later sold once prices rose on the promotions, according to the U.S. Department of Justice and the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
McAfee is being detained in Spain on separate criminal charges filed by the Justice Department’s tax division, the department said. Watson, an executive adviser of McAfee’s so-called cryptocurrency team, was arrested on Thursday night, the Justice Department said. Neither could be reached immediately for comment.
McAfee and Watson allegedly engaged in a scheme to exploit the “broad reach” of McAfee’s Twitter account by buying cryptocurrency assets, concealing a plan to liquidate them and then selling most quickly after his endorsements boosted prices, the CFTC said in a court document filed on Friday.
DOJ: MCAFEE is currently detained in Spain on separate criminal charges filed by the United States Department of Justice’s Tax Division. https://t.co/8CdPNS9wRe— Lee Ferran (@leeferran) March 5, 2021
BREAKING: Johnn McAffee & advisor of his cryptocurrency team indicted by @TheJusticeDept for fraud & money laundering.— John Scott-Railton (@jsrailton) March 5, 2021
Pump & dump scheme & hyping ICOs without disclosing stakes..
McAffee already detained in Spain. Advisor arrested in Tx.
Source: https://t.co/6BbsLhEOlp pic.twitter.com/b1dvAJKCuU
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