A 54-year-old Reseda man has been charged for his role in a $21 million cryptocurrency fraud scheme in which he lured investors by falsely claiming his business partnered with prominent companies like Apple Inc, Pfizer Inc. and Disney, authorities said.
Michael Alan Stollery, CEO and founder of Titanium Blockchain Infrastructure Services, was charged with one count of securities fraud, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said in a statement Thursday, June 30.
As part of the scheme, Stollery also falsified documents explaining how the technology underlying the cryptocurrency works, posted fake testimonials and lied about business relationships with the U.S. Federal Reserve Board and dozens of major companies, prosecutors allege.
As a result, the company’s initial coin offering, where the company sells a new cryptocurrency to raise funds, brought in about $21 million from investors in the United States and overseas, prosecutors said.
“Mr. Stollery convinced victims to invest by deceiving them with calculated lies about the profit potential and by artfully creating an illusion that he was well-connected and a proven success,” Kristi Johnson, assistant director in charge of the FBI’s Los Angeles Field Office, said in a statement. “
Stollery faces up to 20 years in prison if convicted, officials said.