Older generations have been through a substantial rollercoaster with the financial industry in their lifetime. However, as the evolving world changes with the presence of cryptocurrency, the territory seems new and unfamiliar, leading scam artists to take advantage of these investors that are new to cryptocurrency.
As The Block reports, this is exactly the case in a new lawsuit involving Tommy and Christine Garrison. The Garrisons have accused Reginald Buddy Ringgold III aka Rasool Abdul Rahem El of three different crimes. Those crimes include:
“violation of federal securities laws, violation of California’s securities laws, and financial abuse of a senior citizen,”
The Block says. The publication states that the issue in this case seems like a matter of misrepresentations, which is unfortunately all too common in the industry.
Based on the information that the Garrisons included in the case, the defendant had convinced the couple to invest their money in multiple crypto ventures. Over the course of the case, it looks like Ringgold had a substantial amount of communication between himself and the Garrisons, leading to the total of $819,784 attributed to Ringgold for the investments.
While the amount alone is huge, the bigger surprise is the actions that Ringgold has taken to ensure that they provided such a high amount. Ringgold had proclaimed to have 17 years of financial industry experience, and his LinkedIn profile shows that he states that he has five entities that he is the authority for. All of the above has proven to be untrue, including that he holds credentials with multiple financial authorities.
The first documented interactions between the Garrisons and Ringgold was in September 2016, though the pressure to hand over the funds did not begin until the middle of 2017.
The Garrisons allege that he took to odd measures to secure the funds, following them into their bank, crying over the lack of satisfying his requests, and yelling/screaming at the couple. Somehow, rather than cutting ties to Ringgold, the couple started to give money to Ringgold.
Over time, as Ringgold received money, he converted the funding to cash, and even guided them through the process of converting the money to Bitcoin with the use of localbitcoins.com. Once the funds were in cryptocurrency, Ringgold took to invest in BitConnect, advice the Garrisons to invest in initial coin offerings (ICOs) and misled the Ringgold. According to the counsel of the Garrisons,
“Ringgold misleadingly failed to disclose that ICO tokens are the crypto-version of penny stocks, but worse.”
There is still plenty of allegations left to unravel and investigate in this lawsuit, and there is likely plenty of information that these sympathetic individuals left out.
However, unless the information that Ringgold and the other defendants have will have some sort of legal logic, the outcome will most likely be unfortunate for them.