Update: Scam-Facilitating Payment Processors MoneyNetInt and Payswix!

Update on MoneyNetInt and Payswix
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FCA-regulated EMI MoneyNetInt was one of the big payment processors for the fraudulent binary options industry that defrauded hundreds of thousands of people out of tens of billions of dollars between 2010 and 2018. We exposed Israeli-controlled MoneyNetInt and its affiliated GlobalNetInt as payment facilitators in many scams. Consequently, in June 2021, the FCA announced that MoneyNetInt voluntarily stopped acquiring new customers temporarily in June 2021.

MoneyNetInt and Payswix and their troubled past

Effective from 1 June 2021, Moneynet Limited (FRN: 900190) volunteered to: restrict, for a temporary period, the onboarding of all new customers as part of an enhancement process, following dialogue with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA). Existing customers should not be affected during this temporary period, and all of our services remain intact.

MoneyNetInt announcement on its website

MoneyNetInt & Payswix Key data

Trading nameMoneyNetInt
GlobalNetInt/GNI (old)
Business activityE-Money Institution
Legal entityMoneynetint Ltd, UK
M-Net International Inc., US
Payswix UAB, Lithuania
AuthorizationsMoneyNetInt: FCA-regulated EMI (Ref No 900190)
Payswix: BoL-regulated EMI (License No 21)
Related individualsYishay Moshe Trif (LinkedIn profile)
Gil Asher Trif
Raphael Yehudah Golan
Raphael Golan, UK
Leon Isaacs, UK
Ludvikas Kulikauskas, Lithuania (LinkedIn)

The Cybercrime History

MoneyNetInt facilitated the cybercrime organization of Uwe Lenhoff

FinTelegram has revealed that MoneyNetInt was a payment facilitator for Uwe Lenhoff and Gal Barak‘s cybercrime organizations. Lenhoff and Barak were arrested for investment fraud and money laundering in 2019. Lenhoff died in custody and Barak was sentenced to several years in prison in 2020 for the same. About in dozen other individuals from these cybercrime organizations have also been convicted and are in prison since then.

MoneyNetInt has supported many other scam networks as payment processors. Among them was the so-called Zoo scam broker network, which mainly worked with offshore entities registered in the Marshall Islands.

MoneyNetInt and the Zoo scam network

The funds of the defrauded online trading clients were laundered through MoneyNetInt and GlobalNetInt, among others, which maintained bank accounts with ING or Deutsche Handelsbank, for example. Scams victims are currently trying to get restitution payments from facilitating payment processors. The now-defunct ING subsidiary Payvision is sued by victims of the scams of Lenhoff and Barak. It is currently unknown to us whether MoneyNetInt is also being sued by victims because of this.

The principal of the European Fund Recovery Initiative (EFRI) has confirmed to FinTelegram that lawsuits from victims are currently pending against Payvision in various jurisdictions. These activities are being coordinated by EFRI.

The Lithuanian Leaks And Regulatory Issues

Until at least Q3 2021, the shareholders of FCA-regulated MoneyNetInt, Golan Holdings Ltd and Triff Holdings Ltd, were also the majority shareholders of GlobalNetInt UAB (now Payswix UAB) in Lithuania. Both schemes had regulatory issues:

  • In June 2021, MoneyNetInt had to restrict its onboarding of new clients after discussions with the FCA. The restrictions are still in place.
  • GlobalNetInt was fined €350,000 by the Bank of Lithuania over money laundering issues (report here). Consequently, the EMI was renamed and became Payswix.

In early 2021, whistleblowers came forward to FinTelegram with information about GlobalNetInt‘s activities. It turned out that the Lithuanian EMI had indeed developed extensive activities for scammers and illegal business in the crypto and gambling sectors. In June 2021, according to the reports, the punishment by the Bank of Lithuania took place.

Lithuanian Liudvikas Kulikauskas still serves as CEO of Payswix. However, we do not know the current shareholders and whether the MoneyNetInt owners are still associated with Payswix.

The MoneyNetInt Zombie Strategy

The voluntary restriction on new customer acquisition remains in place more than two years after it took effect in June 2021. This is also reflected in the visitors to the website. According to Similarweb, the MoneyNetInt website hardly registers any more visitors. It looks like MoneyNetInt, led by Yishay Trif as CEO, is (willingly or not) relying on a zombie strategy.

Without growth fueled by new customers, we believe that an EMI cannot be run economically. On the other hand, given the rather dark past, this strategy may even be the best possible option to avoid lawsuits.

Not affected by the FCA restriction is the US registered M-Net International Inc. which also offers IBAN accounts and financial services to customers in Europe. The US entity is registered as a money transmitter with the US authorities.

Share Information

If you have any information about MoneyNetInt, its operators and activities, please let us know via our whistleblower system, Whistle42.

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