Rapping TikToker aka ‘the Crocodile of Wall Street’ revealed as woman arrested for $3.6bn bitcoin fraud

Whilst the us Justice Division introduced on Tuesday that it had unraveled its biggest-ever cryptocurrency robbery, seizing a report-shattering $3.6 billion in bitcoin, the arena of finance waited with baited breath for the masterminds involved in the ploy to be unmasked.  

However rather than a professional hacker or a top-flying banker, it used to be a TikTok rapper and her magician husband who’ve been arrested on money laundering charges attached to the robbery. 

New York couple Ilya “Dutch” Lichtenstein, 34, and his wife, Heather Morgan, 31, who were arrested in Big Apple this week spent the unlawful proceeds on items starting from gold and non-fungible tokens to a $500 Walmart present card, prosecutors said.

The couple had lively public profiles, with Ms Morgan referred to as rap singer “Razzlekhan,” a pseudonym that she stated on her web site noted Genghis Khan “but with extra pizzazz.”

Heather Morgan is accused of conspiring to launder billions of dollars in cryptocurrency stolen from the 2016 hack of a virtual forex.

in addition to her rap singer profile, Morgan had sidelines in the painting, fashion design, and writing worlds, the place she pitched herself as a type of company educate. one in all her recent items used to be titled, in part, “tips to Give Protection To Your Online Business from Cybercriminals” and featured an interview with a cryptocurrency alternate proprietor approximately how you can save you fraud.

in one video posted on social media she refers to herself the “Crocodile of Wall Side Road” at the same time as being filmed dancing in front of the The Big Apple Inventory Alternate. In any other she raps that “following the rules is for fools”. 

The pair is accused of conspiring to launder 119,754 bitcoin stolen after a hacker broke into Bitfinex in 2016 and initiated more than 2,000 unauthorized transactions. Justice Division officers said the transactions at the time had been valued at $71 million in bitcoin, but with the rise within the currency’s worth, the worth now could be over $4.FIVE billion.

It used to be the Justice Department’s biggest monetary seizure, Deputy Attorney Basic Lisa Monaco stated, including in a press release that it displays cryptocurrency is “now not a safe haven for criminals.”

Mr Lichtenstein and Ms Morgan face fees of conspiring to dedicate cash laundering besides as to defraud the U.s.a.. The case used to be filed in a federal court docket in Washington, D.C.

Heather Morgan is accused of conspiring to launder billions of dollars in cryptocurrency stolen from the 2016 hack of a virtual currency exchange Heather Morgan is accused of conspiring to launder billions of bucks in cryptocurrency stolen from the 2016 hack of a virtual foreign exchange

At their initial appearances in federal court docket in Ny on Tuesday afternoon, U.S. Justice Of The Peace Judge Debra Freeman set bond at $5 million for Lichtenstein and $THREE million for Morgan and demanded that their oldsters post their houses as security for his or her return to court.

A key clue may have come from the 2017 bust of an underground virtual market used to launder a component of the budget. U.S. officials stated a few of the cash was transferred to AlphaBay, an the rest-is going version of eBay hosted on the dark web.

Whilst the site was taken down, it most likely allowed authorities to get entry to AlphaBay’s interior transaction logs and fasten them to a cryptocurrency account in Lichtenstein’s identify, in step with virtual currency tracking company Elliptic.

Ilya 'Dutch' Lichtenstein, 34, and his wife, Heather Rhiannon Morgan, 31, who raps under the name Razzlekhan, were arrested on Tuesday in Manhattan on money laundering charges Ilya ‘Dutch’ Lichtenstein, 34, and his spouse, Heather Rhiannon Morgan, 31, who raps under the name Razzlekhan, have been arrested on Tuesday in Ny on cash laundering charges Credit Score: Instagram

Bitfinex mentioned in an announcement it was once running with the dep. of Justice to “establish our rights to a go back of the stolen bitcoin.”

Mr Lichtenstein and Ms Morgan additionally attempted to launder cash by way of a network of forex exchanges or claimed that the money represented payments to Ms Morgan’s startup, the department of Justice mentioned.

Ms Morgan, wearing a white hoodie at her courtroom look, often glanced back at her parents, who were seated within the  court. Each she and Mr Lichtenstein, who holds dual U.S.-Russian citizenship, nodded as Pass Judgement On Freeman warned them of critical effects if they attempted to flee.

In this courtroom sketch, attorney Sam Enzer, center, sits between Heather Morgan, left, and her husband, Ilya in this court comic strip, lawyer Sam Enzer, center, sits between Heather Morgan, left, and her husband, Ilya “Dutch” Lichtenstein, in federal court docket Credit Score:  Elizabeth Williams

They’re Going To each be put on area arrest, with digital monitoring, and can be barred from undertaking cryptocurrency transactions pending trial, Pass Judgement On Freeman stated. A pass judgement on in Washington, where additional hearings will be held, may later set different stipulations, she said.

Prosecutors sought to have each detained sooner than trial, arguing they posed a flight possibility. But Pass Judgement On Freeman said she used to be swayed via safety legal professional Anirudh Bansal’s argument that each Lichtenstein and Morgan had known they were beneath research due to the fact November and nevertheless remained within the U.s..

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