- John Bigatton, Australia’s sole representative of BitConnect project, has had his accounts frozen in addition to receiving a travel ban from the Federal Court, as per ASIC’s request.
- Bigatton was one of the leading faces of the BitConnect crypto Ponzi scheme, which promised high returns to innocent investors, only to shut down without prior warning in January 2018.
- Bigatton’s wife disappeared just two months later, in March, and is still missing to this day.
One of the most vocal promoters of the BitConnect scam, John Bigatton, now has his assets frozen, in addition to receiving a travel ban. Bigatton is an Australian promoter of one of the most famous cryptocurrencies Ponzi schemes, and it is suspected that he stole over $2.6 billion US dollars. However, soon after the investors and authorities realized that the project is a scam, Bigatton’s wife went missing.
Now, Bigatton has his funds frozen and is prevented from leaving the country by the Federal Court, which was requested to make such a move by Australia’s corporate watchdog, ASIC, back in December 2018.
The BitConnect Scam
Some time ago, John Bigatton worked as a financial adviser, serving large wealth management groups in Australia’s largest cities. He also got involved with the BitConnect cryptocurrency, which later turned out to be a well-known scam, collapsing on January 16, 2018, after being suspected by scamming millions of dollars from individual investors. Bigatton, listed as BitConnect Director, found himself under investigation by the FBI.
Meanwhile, the case was used as an example of the high risks involved by investing in tokens within the highly unregulated cryptocurrency market. According to an entire series of lawsuits filed against BitConnect, the project’s investors were promised 40% return by the promoters themselves.
One of the most substantial promises was that they could get $50 million within three years if they invest $1,000. Then, the project simply shut down, taking off with the investors’ money, and leaving them with useless BitConnect coins.
After the scam was unveiled, BitConnect’s token price immediately dropped from $400 to $10 within a single day. Some who lost their life savings were reported to have taken their own lives as a result.
Madeline Bigatton Disappearance
The crypto space did not lack scam reports at this time, but BitConnect incident remained one of the best-known ones for another reason, which is the disappearance of Madeline Bigatton, John Bigatton’s wife.
In March 2018, only two months after the confirmation that the project was a scam, Bigatton’s wife disappeared, with the only thing remaining to be her black 2017 Kia Sorento, which was found at Cape Solander, Kurnell.
Local authorities conducted an extensive investigation, even searching the area via helicopter, dog units, and other means. Madeline Bigatton was not found to this day, and many are suspecting that she may have taken her own life due to financial problems. Bigatton was never accused of having anything to do with her disappearance.
Even though a memorial was held in May 2018, Mrs. Bigatton is still treated only as missing. It should also be noted that ASIC’s application for freezing Bigatton’s funds does not name her as a defendant. However, it is also noteworthy that her disappearance occurred at the same time when BitConnect was under investigation by the FBI and other authorities.
As mentioned, John Bigatton was in a close connection with the BitConnect platform which offered its service to users and investors around the world. He was also listed as the UK-based BitConnect International PLC’s director and shareholder, in addition to being the only representative of BitConnect Australia.
Additionally, ASIC decided to file a request to have Bigatton’s assets frozen, and he was ordered to reveal all of his bank accounts, as well as locations of all cryptocurrencies that he earned by scamming investors.