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US Justice Department To Sell $56M Seized Crypto To Compensate BitConnect Fraud Victims

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The United States Department of Justice has recently announced plans to liquidate $56 million worth of cryptocurrency linked to BitConnect fraud to compensate the scheme victims.

This was announced on Tuesday, November 16, 2021, through the office of Public Affairs of the US Department of Justice.

The report revealed that the BitConnect scheme is the largest cryptocurrency fraud scheme ever charged criminally. The number one promoter of BitConnect, Glenn Arcaro has pleaded guilty to participating in a massive crypto fraud inducing Investors in the United States and abroad to lose over $2 billion in the fraud scheme.

Glenn is currently facing a maximum sentence of 20 years behind bars, his sentencing will take place on Jan. 7, 2022. The US Government “will maintain custody of the seized proceeds in cryptocurrency wallets and intends to use these funds to provide restitution to the victims pursuant to a future restitution order by the court at sentencing”. He has been ordered to pay $24 million to BitConnect’s victims.

Created in 2017, BitConnect promoters lured investors with promises of mouth-watering returns, enticing them to use Bitcoin as collateral against which they could borrow and trade the platform’s native token. The lending platform closed its operations in 2018 after cease and desist orders from the US state regulators, leaving many investors unable to redeem their crypto holdings.

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Nigeria Leads Africa in Crypto Adoption as Investors Anticipate Market Rebound

Nigeria overtakes Kenya to claim the first position as the leading country with crypto adoption rate in Africa

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Nigeria overtakes Kenya to claim the first position as the leading country with crypto adoption rate in Africa. 

Investors King learnt that Nigeria leads other African countries in cryptocurrency adoption so far in 2021. Nigeria which is also Africa’s largest economy ranked 11th in the world position. 

Other African countries on the world list include Morocco which came 2nd in Africa and 14th in the world.

Kenya which led the African continent in 2021 was ranked 3rd in Africa and 19th on the global list. 

The ranking which was conducted by Merchant Machine used five different indexes which include; On-chain cryptocurrency value received at centralized exchanges, On-chain retail value received at centralized exchanges, Peer-to-peer (P2P) exchange trade volume, On-chain cryptocurrency value received from Defi protocols, and On-chain retail value received from Defi protocols. 

The report further stated that despite the ban on cryptocurrency-related transactions by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), about 33.4 million Nigerians still traded or hold crypto assets. 

Millions of Nigerian youth have taken to cryptocurrency in recent years either as a way to attain financial freedom or to hedge against the downward pressure on the naira.

Google trend ranked Nigeria as the country with the highest number of bitcoin searches in the world. 

The challenging economy and the high rate of unemployment which the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) has put at 33.3 percent have made many Nigerians take to cryptocurrency as an alternative way of revenue not minding the volatility risk. 

Besides, some Nigerians have found employment opportunities in the cryptocurrency industry either as cryptocurrency content writers, blockchain developers, cryptocurrency influencers or NFT creators.   

Meanwhile, many cryptocurrency investors believed that bitcoin and a host of other digital assets are trading at discounts.

Although bitcoin is trading below 20,000 dollars at the time of this report, many cryptocurrency investors, however, believed that the market will soon rebound. 

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Blockchain: Lekki Free Trade Zone Partners Gluwa to Create Virtual Free Zone

Lekki Free Free Zone Development Company (LFZ) is collaborating with a California-based blockchain company, Gluwa to create a virtual free zone within the Lekki corridor. 

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Lekki Free Free Zone Development Company (LFZ) is collaborating with a California-based blockchain company, Gluwa to create a virtual free zone within the Lekki corridor. 

Both companies are looking for ways to explore blockchain technology for the use of trade collaboration, growth and sustainability among companies that operate within the Lekki Free Trade Zone.

LFZ head of innovation and special projects, Mr Tomiwa Idowu disclosed that the initiative will be a tripartite project between LFZ, Gluwa and the Nigeria Exporting Zone Processing Zones Authority. 

Tomiwa Idowu said that the partnership, when finalised, will create a dashboard for the tokenization of goods into non-fungible tokens (NFTs) and provide digital asset-backed loans for new and existing enterprises that are looking to fund operations and/or expand their businesses. He stated that the project will be similar to the integration of Opeansea and Compound. 

Non-fungible tokens often abbreviated as NFTs are unique digital assets which can be bought, sold or borrowed. 

Idowu further stated that he is overwhelmed with the partnership and looks forward to the possibilities and prospects it will bring to Lagos State. 

He went further to commend the Lagos State Governor, Babajide Sanwo-Olu as a beacon of progress and hope not only for Lagos State but the nation in general. 

“Our Governor has always been a firm believer in fast-paced development, which involves using technology to leap-frog bureaucracy and going straight to solving immediate problems”. He said.

Gluwa Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Tae Oh disclosed that he anticipates the partnership with the Lekki Free Trade Zone which is the most developed free zone in Nigeria. He noted that its proximity to Dangote Refinery and the Lekki Deep Sea makes the zone ideal for partnership. 

Incorporated in 2014, Gluwa is an open-source platform powered by blockchain technology to connect global capital to emerging market investment opportunities. Gluwa launched its stable coin in 2016 and has acquired more than one million borrowers. 

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Cryptocurrency Exchange Platform Luno, Adds Two Digital Currencies Solana And Cardano To Its Portfolio

Luno adds two new digital currencies Solana (SOL) and Cardano (ADA) to its portfolio

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Luno, a digital currency exchange facility that offers clients a technology platform to store and trade cryptocurrencies, has expanded its crypto offerings by adding two new digital currencies Solana (SOL) and Cardano (ADA) to its portfolio.

The company disclosed that following these new additions, users can now trade Cardano (ADA) on the Luno app and website, alongside its existing cryptocurrency offerings.

It further disclosed that Solana (SOL) will be made available on the platform from next month October to enable users trade the digital asset.

Cardano (ADA) is reportedly one of the biggest cryptocurrencies by market cap, which has been described as the third-generation blockchain following Bitcoin and Ethereum which are known as the first and second generation blockchain.

Also, Solana (SOL) has been described as one of the best-performing digital currencies in recent years, known to have one of the fastest blockchain in the world and the fastest growing ecosystem in crypto.

Speaking on the company’s latest addition of the two new digital assets to its platform, General Manager for Africa at Luno Marius Reitz said, “As big advocates of building for the long term, we believe it’s important to give customers access to newer crypto applications that have a promising future.

“Now, not only do customers have access to ADA and SOL, but they also have the peace of mind that comes with the rigorous security that customers rely on from Luno.

“In a world that can look complex, we want to break down the complications around cryptocurrencies to make it easy for people to buy, send, store, and learn about.

“Customers don’t need to make one large investment to get started but can build and grow their investment over time through smaller amounts – similar to how they make contributions to their pension for example.”

Reitz concluded by saying, while the two added digital assets Cardano and Solana meet Luno standards for safety, however, being listed on the platform is not an endorsement of its future potential as an investment, noting the fact that investors are always advised to conduct their research.

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