The Department of Justice (DOJ) announced today announced that Philip Reichenthal, a disbarred attorney, pleaded guilty in Manhattan federal court today to conspiracy to commit wire fraud, in connection with a scheme to defraud investors who believed they were purchasing Bitcoin.
Reichenthal engaged in the scheme with Randy Craig Levine, a/k/a “Viktor Lapin,” a/k/a “Andre Santiago Santos Galindo,” a/k/a “Alexander Martinez Lavrov,” a/k/a “Alexander Kozlov,” a/k/a “Hristo Danielov Marinov,” an international fugitive who fraudulently induced victims to send millions of dollars to Reichenthal, who was a licensed attorney at the time of the fraud.
He falsely represented that he would act as an escrow agent for the transactions, but instead, he sent a substantial portion of the money to Levine, before any Bitcoin was provided by Levine to investors. Neither Levine nor Reichenthal ever provided any Bitcoin or refunded the investors’ money.
Reichenthal pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. This charge carries a maximum term of twenty years in prison. He will be sentenced at a later date by the Honorable Lewis A. Kaplan.