Man behind pyramid schemes gets 7.5 years in prison

May 15, 2013. Yekaterinburg Leninsky District Court declared the person who masterminded a number of pyramid schemes, Alexei Kalinichenko, guilty of large-scale fraud (Article 159 (part 4) of the Russian Federation Criminal Code). The trader, who is accused of having stolen over 1bn RUR, got 7.5 years in prison, a UrBC observer reports from the court room.

According to the investigative team, in 2003 Kalinichenko set up Livingston Investment, OOO Global Gaming Expo, and OOO UTG to borrow money from the unsuspecting customers, allegedly to use it for Forex interbank market trading. He promised his investors considerable weekly interest payments; this lasted for three years.

As a result, about 4,000 people from different parts of Russia, Kazakhstan, Germany, Byelorussia, Ukraine, and Latvia became the victims of Alexei Kalinichenko’s pyramid scheme; the total damage was estimated at more than 1bn RUR.

The pronunciation of the sentence began as early as yesterday. Given the amount of time Kalinichenko has already spent in detention, his prison term will come to about five more years.


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