“I know now that the world is not a video game.”
On Wednesday, Sept. 15, the United States Department of Justice released a report detailing the case against Stefan He Qin. He Qin is an Australian native that established 2 now-defunct cryptocurrency hedge funds. According to the investigation, the man claimed that its crypto business had no “ups and downs,” making it a safe investment. Turns out, all the money invested in him were used for his personal leisure.
Who is Stefan He Qin?
Stefan He Qin, the founder of the Virgil Sigma Fund LP (“Virgil Sigma”) and the VQR Multistrategy Fund LP (“VQR”), was recently sentenced with over 7 years. In the recent document posted by the DOJ, Audrey Strauss, United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced the said charges against the business man.
According to report, He Qin claimed that his cryptocurrency hedge fund business was booming with over $100 million investment. Between 2017 through 2020, He Qin’s operations were non-stop in New York.
A lot of people reportedly invested on his business over the promise of a “market-neutral” cryptocurrency investment. As per ZDNet report, ‘market-neutral’ means that the investment would not be affected by the “ups and downs” of the cryptocurrency market. As we all know, cryptocurrency is a volatile market that no one knows where it’s heading.
Despite the red flags in it, thousands of so-called investors still put their money on He Qin’s company. What they did not know was that the crypto founder is not putting their money to the market.
The investigation found out that He Qin used all the money for his personal expenses and investments— that had nothing to do with what his company promised.
He even rented a private New York City penthouse as his residence— using the money of his victims.
Stefan He Qin apologizes
Last February, He Qin was arrested and pleaded guilty to one count of securities fraud. At the time, he also apologized to all his victims, saying that he now know that “the world is not a video game.”
“I deserve the punishment that I’m going to receive today. I will spend the rest of my life trying to make up for the pain I’ve caused. I am so, so, so sorry.”
Despite the apology, U.S. District Judge Valerie E. Caproni, who was the first judge in his trial, said that she doesn’t believe that He Qin was really apologetic for what he did.
That is why she imposed the new trial against the suspect.
“But if he’s charming me the way he charmed his victims; he’s a real danger because he thinks his needs are more important than everyone else’s,” she added.
Dec. 15 prison date
Due to the investigation and He Qin’s own admission of crimes against him, the court ordered the suspect to be in prison on Dec. 15.
His money that was been part of his scheme was also ordered to be forfeited. The amount was said to be around $54 million.
“Qin’s brazen and wide-ranging scheme left his beleaguered investors in the lurch for over $54 million, and he has now been handed the appropriately lengthy sentence of over seven years in federal prison,” said Judge Strauss in the report.