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Yukom Binary Options Fraud Case – Follow the money! Fibonatix, Payobin and other involved payment services providers

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The Yukom Enterprise binary options fraud scheme, currently being prosecuted by the U.S. Prosecutors and sued by the U.S. Commodity and Futures Commission (CFTC) for binary options fraud, has collected more than $100 million from retail investors worldwide through its BinaryBook, BigOption, and BinaryOnline brands. The exact numbers vary. While the U.S. prosecutors speak of about $145 million the CFTC lawsuit mentions $103 million.

It will take months for the Yukom Enterprise scheme to be completely investigated and judged. Following the conviction of the former CEO of the scheme, the Israeli Lee Elbaz, by a U.S. jury, the trial against the beneficial owners Yossi Herzog and Kobi Cohen are next in line on the criminal channel. In addition to the scheme’s two beneficial owners, other persons from the schema are also indicted. The five former employees Shira Uzan, Lissa Mel, Liora Welles, Austin Smith, and Yair Hadar have already pleaded guilty and concluded a plea agreement with the U.S. prosecutors.

The stolen money and money laundering

During the Relevant Period, the Defendants have accepted at least $103,636,488 million in funds in connection with the fraudulent binary option trading scheme. In an effort to conceal the true ownership of the Yukom Enterprise and prevent customers who realized they had been defrauded from recovering funds, Defendants, often acting through one of the Related Entities, have used over 100 off-shore bank accounts to funnel deposits from U.S. customers, all of which ultimately came to be controlled by Cohen, Herzog, and Peretz, or others acting on behalf of and in concert with the Yukom Enterprise.

CFTC lawsuit paragraph 89

According to the CFTC lawsuit, the Yukom Enterprise perpetrators misappropriated a significant percentage of those customer funds by utilizing various manipulative or deceptive instruments, including so-called “bonuses” and “risk-free” trades. They prevented client-victims from withdrawing funds by artificially manipulating the results of fictitious binary option “trades” to force customer losses and ultimately prevent customers from withdrawing funds.

The CFTC found that Yossi Herzog und his partner Kobi Cohen worked with an elaborated network of companies and bank accounts to launder the money they stole from retail investors in the first place. They have used over 100 off-shore bank accounts to funnel deposits from U.S. customers, all of which ultimately came to be controlled by Cohen, Herzog, and Peretz, or others acting on behalf of and in concert with the Yukom Enterprise. The criminal term for this activities is money laundering.

Where’s the money? Much of the client-victims money was used to pay salaries and bonuses to Yukom’s boiler room agents and management. A lot of money was also paid to mostly Israeli online marketing companies for the acquisition of data of new (potential) client-victims. However, a significant portion remained with the beneficial owners and their entities. How the stolen money from the retail investors via BinaryBook, BigOption and BinaryOnline was channelled to the beneficial owners (a process which is also called money-laundering) is certainly best known to the payment service providers involved.

Payobin and MoneyNetInt

The authorities, lawyers of defrauded retail investors and FinTelegram are still searching for the exact details of the travel route of the stolen money. It’s for sure a complex puzzle but with the muchappreciated help of insiders you can put it together. It takes time and patience but money can always be traced. One must follow the money deposited by retail investors via the involved payment service providers. These PSPs are responsible for the money laundering of the captured funds and have orchestrated them. Also, these PSPs around Yukom Enterprise are mostly located in Israel or are operated by Israelis.

We have already uncovered in previous reports that the Israeli Payobin (operated by the Israeli Payotech Ltd) was directly involved in the payments of Yukom’s fraudulent binary options scheme BinaryBook and its operator WSB Investment Ltd, for example. The Payobin people around Eyal Nachum, Tamir Zoltovski and their frontman Oded Jeremitsky have organized payment transactions for dozens of other broker scams. In this context also important was the Hermes Solution Podgorica, registered in Montenegro, which was used to process bank deposits from customer/victims of BinaryBook.

Eyal Nachum Email about Hermes Solution
Eyal Nachum email explaining SeeddPay and Hermes Solution Podgorica DOO

Hermes Solution was controlled by Nachum, Zoltovski, and Jeremitsky through SeeddPay Ltd, another offshore-entity registered in the Marshall Islands. Eyal Nachum, the Payobin CEO describes this nicely in the email above. The certified company documents are available to FinTelegram.

Payobin and Hermes with Darin Bakhshy
Hermes Solution facilitates binary options schemes such as BinaryBook

Payobin has engaged with other financial service providers, such as one licensed PSP which was mentioned in the CFTC complaint, to launder the stolen funds for Yukom Enterprise and other broker scams. These financial service providers involved are also victims of Payobin and have usually had typically no information about the binary options fraud that was handled through Payobin. Currently, various lawsuits and criminal investigations are being conducted in several jurisdictions.

Payobin, for example, accepted WSB Investment with BinaryBook as its merchant and thus integrated the binary option scheme into the global financial system. Payobin did the KYC and AML check. A registered merchant like WSB was able to receive funds from small investors via Payobin and its correspondence partners.

Payobin accepted WSB and BinaryBook as Merchant for its payment network
Payobin Merchant application for for WSB Investment and BinaryBook

In addition to Payobin, the Israeli MoneyNetInternetional acted as PSP in the Yukom Enterprise scheme. MoneyNet International, a financial service provider licensed in the UK by the Financial Conduct Agency (FCA) with the registration No 900190 since 2014, used to work closely with Israeli binary options perpetrator Guy Galboiz and his MigFin in many other broker scams.

The binary options and forex broker scene in Israel is extremely well networked, acting globally and professionally.

Fibonatix and Tal Miller

Tal Miller founder of Fibonatix
Tal Miller, Fibonatix CEO

In addition to Payobin and MoneyNetInt, the Israeli payment service provider Fibonatix has been involved in the Yukom Enterprise Schema. The FinTelegram documents show that a considerable volume of credit card deposits to the Yukom Enterprise scheme was settled via Fibonatix (see screenshot below). Fibonatix was founded in 2013 by the Israeli Tal Miller (LinkedIn profile) and has focused its payment services in recent years on the high risk segment such as gaming, gambling, binary options, forex, and cryptocurrencies.

Fibonatix processing report BinaryBook December 2015
Fibonatix processing report BinaryBook December 2015

In the above-shown reporting period December 2015 Fibonatix has processed payments in excess of $4,3 million (USD, EUR, GBP) for BinaryBook. In the 7 months from July 2015 to January 2016 alone, according to a Fibonatix statement, more than $22 million in payments were processed by BinaryBook customers. This made Fibonatix one of the most important PSPs for Yukom Enterprise alongside Payobin and MoneyNetInt.

On its website, Fibonatix explains that it is a Gold Member m MasterCard Business Partner Program. This makes the cooperation with the Yukom Enterprise Schema interesting because MasterCard has already banned the Binary Options from its network in North America in 2016.

The journey continues

The investigations of the Yukom Enterprise scheme as a precedent for the entire fraudulent binary options industry between 2012 and 2018 will bring many more amazing facts to light. Many puzzle pieces are still missing but every day the picture becomes more complete.

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