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Another Fraud Exposed: Crypto Influencer ‘TJ Stone’ Pleads Guilty

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Popular crypto influencer ‘TJ Stone,’ originally known as Thomas John Sfraga, was found guilty of wire fraud by the federal court in Brooklyn.  

On May 17, the crypto scam market added a new story; this time, the federal court trapped crypto influencer ‘TJ Stone.‘ The crypto personality pleaded guilty to wire fraud charges, swindling over $1.3 Million. 

Sfraga used cryptocurrency staking as a major weapon to attempt the scam and has been ordered to pay over $1.33 Million as compensation.

Crypto Influencer ‘TJ Stone’ Entered a Guilty Plea

On May 17, The federal court in Brooklyn revealed another big crypto scam that involved the major amount of $1.3 Million. The US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of New York (EDNY) circulated the scam news on X, exposing the personality’s identity and amount swindled. 

TJ Stone was involved in wire fraud and promised investors 60% returns within 3 months.  

“For years, Sfraga brazenly lied to friends, neighbors, and investors to swindle over $1.3 million of their hard-earned life savings,” stated the US Attorney. If sentenced, Sfarga may face imprisonment of over 20 years and restitution.  

FBI Investigation into TJ Stone’s Scam Story

Sfraga ran a business named after a fake company from the TV show ‘Seinfeld’ as well as held ownership of “Vandelay Contracting Corp.” and “Build Strong Homes LLC.” He was involved in various projects, including hosting cryptocurrency events, real estate development, podcasting, and media relations.   

Between 2019 and 2022, TJ Stone exited the ownership after court filings and an FBI investigation. 

As per the FBI investigation, TJ Stone used a cryptocurrency staking process to attempt fraudulent activities. In the December 2023 filing, Sfraga misled investors involved in cryptocurrency staking and claimed staking was a ‘risk-free’ process.            

A Look At The Unstoppable Story Of Crypto Illicit Activities

With time, crypto-laundering trends and illicit activities are gradually increasing. In 2019, scammers and hackers laundered over $11.1 Billion worth of digital assets, which reached $31.5 Billion in 2022, according to Chainalysis. 

TJ Stone

Total cryptocurrency laundered by year (2019-2023) I Source: Chainalysis 

A slight decline of $22.2 Billion was recorded in 2023, indicating a drop in fraudulent activities and an upgrade of the crypto market in terms of safety. InJanuary  2024, cryptocurrency projects lost $127 million due to hacking and frauy, showcasing a sudden rise in crypto scams.      

Increased scams and illicit activities in the crypto and financial industry are a major concern and need mitigation. The US attorney promised to hold fraudsters accountable and achieve justice for victims across the United States.  

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