This Canadian British Colombia Securities Commission (BCSC) recently issued a warning against the illegally operating offshore broker LQDFX (www.lqdfx.com). LQD Limited in the Marshall Islands is the operator. This unregulated offshore broker has been co-founded and controlled by Ozan Ozerk, a director and beneficial owner of the CySEC-regulated EuroTrader Group, and his partner Soteris Georgiou. LQDFX and the offshore EuroTrader broker schemes illegally acquires investors in Europe and North America and onboard clients in deliberate violation of KYC/AML procedures!
LQDFX is a forex brand operated by the unregulated offshore entity LQD Limited in the Marshall Islands. The company’s director and 30% shareholder is John Watson, who is also the domain registrant. LQDFX has been the subject of warnings from the Capital Markets Board of Turkey (link), the US SEC (link) and recently received the mentioned BCSC warning in Canada. In June 2017, LQDFX was blocked (blacked out) by the Turkish regulator.
Insiders had provided us with emails showing that Ozan Ozerk was the determining person, at least when LQDFX was founded in 2015 and for sure until 2017. We currently do not know what the ownership and control of LQDFX will be in October 2021. However, we know that LQDFX and the regulated EuroTrader Group use the same infrastructure, systems, resources, and procedures. These findings suggest shared leadership, doesn’t it?
LQDFX is not necessarily a scam, but in any case, it offers unauthorized and thus illegal financial products in Europe and North America. Moreover, the onboarding is not compliant with the applicable regulatory requirements in these countries. In our review today, we could have made unlimited deposits to LQDFX via Bitcoins (BTC) without confirming our identity or address.
EuroTrader is a regulated forex and CFD broker brand owned and operated by the EuroTrader Group, a group of companies owned and controlled by the fintech entrepreneur Ozan Ozerk. Until at least April 2021, the latter has also been one of the beneficial owners behind the offshore broker LQDFX. Since we published our initial report about the EuroTrader Group in April 2021 and exposed the offshore activities of the group’s CySEC-regulated entity, some changes have been made.
EuroTrader.com is operated by the regulated South African offshore entity EuroTrade SA (Pty) Ltd. In our review, we found it to be as non-compliant as the unregulated offshore broker LQDFX. In our simulation, we have been able to make unlimited deposits via Bitcoin (BTC) and at least €25,000 via credit and debit card even before we confirmed the email address. Not to mention verifying our identity and address. In short, there is no compliant KYC/AML/Onboarding procedure at EuroTrader.com either.
All regulated EuroTrader platforms use the same software, have almost identical design and onboarding procedures.
EuroTrader.com, regulated in South Africa, also offers its financial services in the EU and UK without the appropriate regulatory permission. Moreover, its procedures are non-compliant and illegal in these regulatory regimes. At least we were able to log in with IP and post addresses in these jurisdictions in our review. Thus, the EuroTrader Group circumvents the regulatory provisions of CySEC and ESMA.
There are a few significant legally as well regulatory relevant differences between the broker platforms:
- EuroTrader.eu – no bonus, verification required before deposit, no crypto deposits.
- EuroTrader.com – bonus a/k/a 111% funded trading program (here), no verification for deposit, crypto deposits.
- LQDFX – like EuroTrader.com with a 100% bonus program (here);
The most notable difference between the regulated EuroTrader.eu and the offshore entities EuroTrader.com and LQDFX is the use of cryptocurrencies by the latter. This allows unlimited deposits to be made without any verification (see screenshot above).
If you have any information about LQDFX, EuroTrader Group, and the acting persons and companies, please share it with us via our whistleblower system, Whistle42.