Alleged Bitcoin Fraudster Extradited To The US From Morocco

Crime, News | April 16, 2018 By:

Renwick Haddow, a UK citizen who lived in New York City, was extradited from Morocco to the US for allegedly committing fraud that saw over $36 million stolen from investors.

Last year, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed fraud charges against Haddow in connection with a pair of purported startups: Bitcoin Store, an online marketplace for the cryptocurrency, and Bar Works, a venture to transform former restaurants into work spaces. Each charge carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.

The SEC alleges that Haddow created a broker-dealer and did not register the firm with the agency as required under the US federal securities laws. Haddow allegedly used sales representatives to cold-call potential investors and sell securities in his Bitcoin Store and Bar Works. According to the SEC, Haddow made material misrepresentations about the management, operations, and historical performance of the companies.

“Haddow concealed his interest in Bitcoin Store and fabricated the purported “experienced team of leading investment professionals” working at the company,” the complaint said. “In connection with Bar Works, Haddow adopted the alias “Jonathan Black” to further hide his role in the schemes. Haddow claimed that “Jonathan Black” had an extensive background in finance and had a role in setting up “Car Share,” a car-sharing app.

In July 2017, the Morocco Ministry of Justice arrested Haddow to investigate the Bitcoin Shop, Bar Works and a third venture called InCrowd Equity. In December 2017, the SEC announced that Haddow had agreed to be extradited. On Friday, Geoffrey S. Berman, US Attorney for the Southern District of New York, and William F. Sweeney Jr., the Assistant Director-in-Charge of the New York Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (“FBI”), announced that Haddow had been sent back to the US.