A US-based pastor, Eli Regalado, says it was God who instructed him to st£al over $1.3 million from his Christian community in a cryptocurrency scheme.
Eli and his wife, Kaitlyn, are accused of vi%lating Colorado’s anti-fr@ud, licensing and registration laws after they created and sold their cryptocurrency, known as “INDXcoin,” to Christians in the state.
The couple allegedly told potential investors that the Lord had told them people would become wealthy if they invested, according to a recent press release issued by the state’s division of securities.
However, prosecutors stated that INDXcoin was “practically worthless” in actuality. Investors lost millions of dollars while the Regalados lived lavishly, TheGuardian reports.
In a video statement posted on INDXcoin website, Eli admitted that the pair squandered $1.3 million raised through cryptocurrency.
“The charges are that me and Kaitlyn pocketed $1.3m. I just wanted to come out and say those charges are true.
A few hundred thousand dollars went to a home remodel the Lord told us to do. We took God at his word and sold a cryptocurrency with no clear exit,” he said.
Regalado added that the couple still believes that God will “work a miracle in the financial sector”.
INDXcoin raised around $3.2 million from more than 300 people between June 2022 and April 2023. The Regalados spent at least $1.3 million, or more than half, on personal luxury goods such as jewellery, an au pair, and a costly house improvement project.
The Regalados also collected at least $290,000 for their online-only church, Victorious Grace Church, despite the fact that it has no physical location.
The Regalados also have no expertise with cryptocurrency. A third-party auditor also reported serious technical issues with the INDXcoin code, but the Regalados continued to promote the cryptocurrency as a low-risk, high-reward solution.