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On September 19, 2020, the People’s Court of Yancheng Economic Development Zone heard the PlusToken case and made a final judgment.
At today’s prices, the value of the seized assets exceeds US$4.2 billion.
According to reports, the illegally obtained funds and proceeds of the PlusToken team will be confiscated according to law and turned over to the state treasury.
In the criminal ruling, PlusToken’s members, illegal activities, and the handling of the assets involved are recorded in detail, and the chain teahouse has selected key content for readers to quickly read.
1. The defendant involved
Chen Bo, Ding Zanqing, Peng Yixuan, Gu Zhijiang, Yuan Yuan, Lu Jiaolong, Zheng Jing, Wang Renhu, Lu Wanlong, He Sisi, Liu Jia, Peng Bo, Liu Shuai, Wu Jianhong committed crimes of organizing and leading pyramid schemes.
Chen Tao is guilty of concealing and concealing criminal proceeds.
2. From growth to destruction
At the beginning of 2018, Chen Bo planned PlusToken to carry out MLM activities under the concept of blockchain, and officially launched the APP on May 1, 2018.
They set up the highest marketing team, the Shengshi Alliance Community, to conduct false propaganda through WeChat groups, the Internet, irregular meetings, concerts, and tourism.
In August 2018, Lu Wanlong joined PlusToken and is responsible for introducing and connecting with the organizers and news media of other blockchain activities to expand their influence.
PlusToken claims to have a “smart dog moving brick” function, but it doesn’t.
Users need to pay more than US$500 worth of digital currency as a threshold fee in order to turn on the “smart dog” to obtain benefits.
In addition, there are five levels of members: ordinary member, big family, big coffee, great god, and creation.
There are three income methods including smart brick moving income, link income, and executive income, and rebates are made.
In January 2019, in order to evade the legal crackdown, the customer service team and the currency transfer team moved to Cambodia and continued to sell.
In the 14 months from April 2018 to June 2019, PlusToken registered 2.69 million members, with a maximum level of 3293.
As of June 2019, PlusToken has collected 314,211 Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH) 9,174,201, Ripple (XRP) 928,280,240, Bitcoin Cash (BCH) 117,450, and EOS (EOS) 51363309. There are 96,023 Dash coins, 11060162640 Dogecoins (DOGE), and 1,847,674 Litecoins (LTC).
Based on the lowest price at the time, the above 8 digital currencies are equivalent to RMB 14.8 billion.
And after June 28, 2019, there are still digital currencies transferred to the PlusToken wallet address.
3. Team members decrypt
1. Chen Bo is the core figure of PlusToken, who plays the role of initiating, planning and manipulating.
2. Ding Zanqing is number two.
Illegal profits of more than 6.15 million yuan (of which 2.98 million yuan was realized through Wang’s platform digital currency, and the profit does not include the cost of insurance for Chen Bo) and a land cruiser car.
3. Peng Yixuan assumes the role of coordination and publicity in the MLM organization.
Actively participate in the Shengshi Alliance community, and develop 69 layers of offline members, with a total of 239,185 member accounts, and illegally profited at least 2.925 million yuan.
4. Gu Zhijiang is responsible for the daily management of the Shengshi Alliance community.
Developed 54165 member accounts on 35 floors of offline members, and realized a total of more than 2 million yuan, of which 630,000 yuan was purchased for a Mercedes-Benz car.
5. Yuan Yuan assisted Chen Bo to manage the back-office staff’s logistical support, as well as financial work (when the coin group needs digital currency, use the Kushen wallet to dial the coin group).
6. Lu Jiaolong is the leader of the background work team and assists Yuan Yuan in his work. After Chen Bo and others were arrested, they conspired with Liu Shuai, Chen Tao and others to transfer digital currency (worth more than 150 million yuan at the time of the case).
During the work period, he made an illegal profit of 96,000 yuan in the form of wages.
7. After Lu Wanlong joined in August 2018, he actively planned and organized PlusToken Global Launch Conference and other activities, and used his own resources to publish news in major media to publicly promote PlusToken.
Chen Bo gave Lu Wanlong a total of 2.05 million yuan in promotion expenses, and Lu Wanlong made a profit of 450,000 yuan.
After the incident, Lu Jiaolong told Lu Wanlong, who was detained in the detention center of the Cambodian Immigration Bureau, the mnemonic of 450 bitcoin wallet addresses.
In March and April 2020, Lu Wanlong transferred 249 bitcoins into 708,426 grapefruit coins, and realized a part of 200,000 yuan.
At present, the defendant Lu Wanlong has not provided the real mnemonic of the wallet address where the pomelo coins are hidden, objectively causing 573181.4 pomelo coins to be unable to be recovered.
8. Zheng Jing led the technical team responsible for the development and operation of the APP and website. At the end of 2018, he handed over the work to the Wang Renhu team and left PlusToken.
Chen Bo paid Zheng Jing a total of 1.65 million yuan, and Zheng Jing made a profit of 255,000 yuan.
9. Wang Renhu replaced Zheng Jing in charge of the operation and maintenance and upgrade of the PlusToken platform.
Chen Bo pays 400,000 yuan worth of digital currency to Wang Renhu every month as operation and maintenance expenses, and another 1.4 million yuan for daily work expenses. Wang Renhu also made a profit of RMB 1.55 million from Chen Bo in the name of settlement allowance and bonus.
10. He Sisi is responsible for PlusToken’s customer service work, responding to member inquiries, helping members to modify their passwords, and summarizing platform failures raised by members, and illegally profited RMB 138,000.
11. Liu Jia is the deputy leader of the coin transfer group, and his job is to review the coin withdrawal application. After March and April 2019, Kushen was used many times to transfer coins to the platform system wallet address.
Liu Jia made an illegal profit of RMB 122,000.
12. Liu Shuai first worked in the customer service team, and later in the coin transfer team, responsible for managing and using Kushen to transfer coins to the system wallet address, summarizing the use of digital currency in the shift, and reviewing member withdrawal applications.
Liu Shuai made at least 70,000 yuan illegally in the form of wages.
13. Peng Bo is an employee of the coin transfer team. He came to PlusToken in November 2018 and his work is the same as above.
Peng Bo made an illegal profit of RMB 85,000.
14. Wu Jianhong is an employee of the coin transfer team and came to PlusToken in November 2018. The work content is the same as above.
Wu Jianhong made an illegal profit of 88,000 yuan.
4. The flow of stolen money
As of the case, Chen Bo has realized 145 million yuan in addition to paying for promotion and staff in digital currency.
Existing evidence has identified the flow of 127 million yuan of stolen money:
1. A total of 10.47 million yuan was transferred to the defendant Yuan Yuan’s parents. Among them, 6 million yuan was used to buy a house and 240,000 yuan was used to decorate another suite under Yuan Yuan’s name.
2. Purchase three cars for a total of 2.5 million yuan, buy a Maserati 720,000 yuan and a Land Rover Range Rover 1.05 million yuan for his brother Chen Qian, and a Toyota Land Cruiser for Ding Zanqing for 730,000 yuan.
31,902 yuan was used to purchase 11 sets of real estate.
5. Reasons for first instance appeal:
Chen Bo: The sentence is too heavy. Most of the digital currencies have been realized, but they have not been reflected in the sentencing.
Since June 28, 2019, my country has lost its nationality and the court of first instance has no jurisdiction.
Ding Zanqing: 1. Did not participate in the initial formation of PlusToken and did not actively develop members. 2. The seized more than 7.29 million yuan was legal property. 3. The sentence is too heavy.
Gu Zhijiang: 1. Not the founder, no substantive power, just to promote membership development, and Chen Bo lied to him and concealed the true model of PlusToken from him. 2. The sentence is too heavy and the fine is too high.
Yuan Yuan: 1. I don’t know the nature of Chen Bo’s work. I didn’t participate in the actual management platform. I only helped Chen Bo with simple computer operations. 2. The confession made during the investigation stage is not true. In fact, he has not participated in any training and marketing activities of PlusToken. 3. Excessive punishment.
Lu Jiaolong: The sentence was too heavy, the fine was too high, and the personal income was less than 100,000 yuan.
Wang Renhu: 1. What you earn is only a fixed technical service fee. 2. The sentence is too heavy and the fine is too high.
The facts found in the judgment of first instance are clear, the evidence is indeed sufficient, the qualitative is accurate, and the sentence is appropriate. The reason for the appeal cannot be established. It is recommended to dismiss the appeal and maintain the original judgment.
6. Comprehensive judgment by the court:
Chen Bo, Ding Zanqing, Peng Yixuan, Gu Zhijiang, Yuan Yuan, Lu Jiaolong, Zheng Jing, Wang Renhu, Lu Wanlong, He Sisi, Liu Jia, Liu Shuai, Peng Bo, and Wu Jianhong committed crimes together, which is a joint crime.
The facts ascertained in the original judgment were clear, the evidence was reliable and sufficient, the conviction was accurate, the sentence was appropriate, and the trial procedures were legal.
In accordance with the provisions of Article 236, Paragraph 1 (1) of the Criminal Procedure Law of the People’s Republic of China, the ruling is as follows:
The appeal was rejected and the original verdict was upheld.
This ruling is final.
The nearly 20,000-character “Criminal Ruling” shows us the birth and demise of a secret MLM group.
The clues are clear, the plot is vivid, and the details are rich, far more shocking than blockbusters.
Whether it is the 14 members of the PlusToken team, the 2.69 million members, or the investors in the world of crypto assets that have been affected, no one has benefited from it.
But even though there have been countless precedents, there will always be people cutting the leeks.
The moment you decide to cut leeks, you have become leeks, and the cutting board is already on the way.
Blockchain, how many evils do it in your name.