Ex-Celsius Exec Pleads Guilty and Agrees to Cooperate
Former Celsius Network associate Roni Cohen-Pavon admits guilt to multiple criminal charges, including manipulating the price of CEL token and securities fraud.
Roni Cohen-Pavon, previously associated with the now-bankrupt cryptocurrency lending platform, Celsius Network, has admitted guilt to multiple criminal charges in the U.S.
During a recent hearing before U.S. District Judge John Koeltl in Manhattan, Roni Cohen-Pavon acknowledged his involvement in four criminal activities. These charges encompassed manipulating the price of the crypto token CEL, securities fraud, and wire fraud. As a significant part of this admission, Cohen-Pavon has committed to aiding the U.S. attorney’s office in Manhattan and the FBI in their ongoing investigations.
This cooperation might include testifying in court if deemed necessary. Given his willingness to cooperate, there's potential for the prosecutors to request Judge Koeltl to factor in Cohen-Pavon's assistance during his sentencing on December 11, 2024.
The initial charges against Cohen-Pavon and Alex Mashinsky, the founder of Celsius Network, were brought forward in July. The duo was accused of artificially inflating the value of the CEL token and subsequently selling their personal holdings just before the dramatic collapse of Celsius Network in July 2022.
While Cohen-Pavon has now admitted his guilt, Mashinsky maintains his innocence, having been released on a substantial $40 million bond. Interestingly, Cohen-Pavon, an Israeli citizen, was not in the U.S. when these charges were levied against him. Currently, he's been released on a $500,000 bond, with permissions to travel between New York and Israel.
Celsius was one of many high-profile crypto collapses in 2022, starting with Three Arrows Capital in May and culminating in the monumental collapse of FTX, formerly the second-largest cryptocurrency exchange globally, in November.