A Canberran man has been charged with fraud in the United States after allegations a number of cryptocurrency companies he founded had been defrauding investors for more than two years.
The United States Securities and Exchange Commission announced on Tuesday it had charged Stefan Qin and his affiliated cryptocurrency companies, such as Virgil Capital, with violations of the country's anti-fraud provisions.
Mr Qin, who graduated from Bruce's Radford College in 2014, is alleged to have been misrepresenting the fund's strategy, assets, and financial condition since at least 2018.
The commission said investors believed their money was used for cryptocurrency trading but Mr Qin instead allegedly used the money for "personal purposes" and other high-risk investments.
The US regulator has responded by filing an emergency action and freezing the company's assets.
"This emergency action is an important step to protect investor assets and prevent further harm," Kristina Littman, the commission's cyber unit chief, said in a media release.
"Qin allegedly made false promises to lure investors and then continued his deception to conceal his misuse of investor funds."
His former Canberra college described Mr Qin as a "maths whiz" who, at the age of 19, put his studies on hold to found the cryptocurrency trading company. In 2018, the company was allegedly managing $23.5 million worth of funds.
The commission said it was conducting an ongoing investigation into the allegations and was seeking permanent injunctions and financial penalties against Mr Qin and Virgil Capital.
The Canberra Times has contacted Virgil Capital and Mr Qin for comment.