June 15, 2024

Notorious Instagram influencer, Jay Mazini, whose real name is Jebara Igbara, has been handed a seven-year jail sentence in New York following his involvement in a major crypto fraud scheme. The scam, which racked up a staggering $8 million, primarily targeted his followers within the Muslim community during the COVID-19 pandemic. This information was shared in an AP report.

As evidenced in court documents, 28-year-old Mazini pleaded guilty to fraud allegations. He conceded that he was the orchestrator of a complex Ponzi scheme, having defrauded individuals of nearly $8 million through cryptocurrency transactions.

Mazini took advantage of the pandemic’s economic instability to exploit ties within his religious community and amass investments for his business, Hallal Capital LLC. He swayed his victims into believing that their investments would yield bountiful returns from stock trading, and the resale of electronics and personal protective equipment.

As per Breon Peace, the U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York, Mazini shamelessly targeted his religious cohorts, exploiting their trust to fuel his lavish and fraudulent lifestyle.

Crypto scam

Online Image Cultivated by Jay Mazini

On Instagram, Mazini crafted an image of a wealthy young entrepreneur. Prosecutors suggest that this lavish portrayal, complete with luxury vehicles and extensive gambling, was financed by his fraudulent operations.

His networking extended beyond local high-profile investors, as his online charisma attracted around one million Instagram followers.

His popularity surged as he regularly filmed massive cash giveaways. His Instagram feed features videos of him giving generous amounts of cash to fast-food employees and unsuspecting Walmart customers. One of his videos even includes rapper 50 Cent, where they distributed cash together.

Instagram influencer Jay Mazini bags 7 years in prison for $8m crypto fraud scheme targeting Muslim community Instagram influencer Jay Mazini bags 7 years in prison for $8m crypto fraud scheme targeting Muslim community Jay Mazini with rapper 50 Cent.

Mazini’s extravagant cash giveaways painted him as a successful businessman who could afford to hand out money without repercussions. This portrayal increased his popularity and trust among his victims, prosecutors shared.

In 2020, he faced accusations of fraud, preceding his 2021 arrest on kidnapping charges. He later admitted to kidnapping a potential witness related to his fraud schemes.

Several victims began contacting the FBI when they realized they had been swindled and discovered Mazini’s imminent legal troubles. Court documents divulge that at least four victims claimed to have sent the influencer over $100,000 in Bitcoin, on the promise of a cash wire transfer.

One victim alleged they were conned out of 50 Bitcoin, and claimed that Mazini initially feigned a wire transfer of $2.56 million, before fabricating excuses for the delay of the transfers.

According to Jeffrey Lichtman, Mazini’s attorney, his client’s seven-year fraud sentence will coincide with a five-year kidnapping sentence, including the duration he has already served since 2021. Mazini has also been ordered to pay $10 million in restitution to his victims.

In the wake of his sentencing, Mazini “profusely apologized” to those he duped, as reported by his attorney, following the Wednesday sentencing in Brooklyn.

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