May 23, 2024
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Ronaldinho Faces Potential Arrest Amid Cryptocurrency Fraud Investigation

Disturbing developments have emerged from the world of football, involving Ronaldinho’s inability to provide testimony in an ongoing investigation into cryptocurrency fraud, which could potentially lead to his arrest in Brazil. The investigation is centred on a company owned by Ronaldinho, known as “18kRonaldinho,” which had promised its clients daily returns exceeding 2% through investments in blockchain technology. Below, you’ll find all the pertinent details.

As previously mentioned, the renowned Brazilian soccer legend, Ronaldinho Gaúcho, is now facing the looming threat of arrest by Brazilian authorities due to his failure to appear for questioning in an investigation regarding an alleged cryptocurrency fraud scheme in Brazil. Reports from local media indicate that Ronaldinho did not show up before the country’s legislative assembly to address inquiries about a suspected pyramid scheme associated with one of his enterprises.

This former star of prestigious teams such as Paris Saint-Germain, FC Barcelona, and AC Milan was consequently unable to offer his testimony during a parliamentary hearing on August 24th. He justified his absence by citing adverse weather conditions and disregarded a subpoena for the second time. According to Congressman Aureo Ribeiro, Ronaldinho will have another opportunity to provide his testimony on August 31st. Failure to comply could grant authorities the authority to compel his appearance before the commission.

It’s essential to note that Brazilian law mandates that witnesses summoned to appear before Congress must do so. Consequently, those who disregard a subpoena may be subject to fines and, if necessary, physically compelled by law enforcement to appear before the assembly.

Furthermore, it’s noteworthy that the investigation primarily revolves around Ronaldinho’s company, “18kRonaldinho.” Allegedly, this company pledged daily profits exceeding 2% to its clients through cryptocurrency investments. A lawsuit exceeding $61 million was initiated against the company for failing to fulfil these promised returns. This dispute has now become part of a broader investigation into cryptocurrency fraud within the country.

Ronaldinho’s legal team asserts that he served merely as an “ambassador” for the company and was, in fact, another victim of the purported scam. According to their account, Ronaldinho’s image and name were exploited without proper consent to deceive potential customers. It’s worth noting that Ronaldinho’s foray into the world of cryptocurrencies also includes a collection of non-fungible tokens (NFTs), launched in collaboration with INFLUXO in 2021.

In 2020, Ronaldinho and his brother Roberto de Assis were detained in Paraguay for using counterfeit passports to enter the country, resulting in more than 170 days of incarceration. Assis is also implicated in the ongoing investigation related to cryptocurrency fraud.

Regarding the earlier arrests, it was reported that Paraguayan national police had entered the hotel suite at the Paraguay Golf Club where the former champion was residing, discovering two forged Paraguayan passports bearing his and his brother Roberto de Assis Moreira’s names. Ronaldinho had travelled to the country to participate in a community initiative sponsored by a foundation offering medical assistance to underprivileged youth. Subsequently, following his testimony, the Paraguayan prosecutor issued an arrest warrant for the former Barcelona star and his brother on charges of entering the country with fake passports, as reported by the Mexican news outlet Milenio in 2020.

This episode adds another layer of controversy to Ronaldinho Gaúcho’s story. In Brazil, he has been under investigation by authorities due to his association with two companies accused of perpetrating Bitcoin-related scams, both of which have been banned by the Brazilian Securities and Exchange Commission. These companies are LBLV and Ronaldinho 18k. Ronaldinho has defended himself by claiming that he disassociated from the latter company as soon as he became aware of the cryptocurrency investment offer. Additionally, the sports celebrity was involved in two cryptocurrency-related initial coin offering (ICO) projects: Ronaldinho Soccer Coin and Champion Coin, both of which experienced setbacks and were subsequently discontinued.

Photo by Tembela Bohle

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