Alex Mashinsky, the former CEO of cryptocurrency exchange Celsius Network, was arrested this morning, according to Bloomberg.
In an unprecedented turn of events, Alex Mashinsky, former CEO of Celsius Network, finds himself in hot water as multiple U.S. regulatory agencies, including the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Department of Justice (DOJ), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) have all filed charges against both Mashinsky and the Celsius Network.
It first emerged that the SEC filed a lawsuit against both Celsius Network and Mashinsky himself earlier today. The former Celsius boss is being accused of securities fraud.
The DOJ then unveiled a sealed indictment against Alexander Mashinsky, former CEO of Celsius Network, alleging two main schemes. The first scheme involves Mashinsky defrauding Celsius customers by making false representations about the profitability and safety of Celsius's business, transforming customers into unknowing participants in a risky investment fund.The second scheme, run alongside Celsius's Chief Revenue Officer Roni Cohen-Pavon and other employees, concerns manipulation of the price of Celsius's proprietary token, CEL, to profit personally from inflated prices.
The DOJ also alleges that Mashinsky and his team made use of Celsius customer deposits to fund these manipulations, all while maintaining a facade of broader market interest in CEL than actually existed.
Mashinsky and Celsius Network have been under scrutiny since the company filed for bankruptcy in July 2022, after losing billions of dollars in value.
The controversial entrepreneur stepped down from his position as CEO in September 2022. His arrest and the SEC's lawsuit represent the latest developments in a saga that continues to send shockwaves through the crypto industry.