Arbitrade/Dignity Gold

Exposed by OffshoreAlert in 2019, Arbitrade perpetrated a cryptocurrency-based investment fraud that raised more than $40 million, with investors told their digital assets were backed by billions of dollars of gold that, in reality, did not exist. Despite the crude nature of Arbitrade's scheme and the fact that several of its principals had histories of lawsuits, judgments, tax liens, and involvement with prior scams, Bermuda Premier David Burt welcomed the company, claiming its operators had passed "enhanced due diligence" and "background checks". Burt's claims were difficult to take seriously given that Arbitrade’s principals included an undischarged bankrupt whose Trustee accused of perpetrating a $3.5 million Ponzi scheme against "friends" and "family”, a penny stock broker whose previous employers include six broker-dealers that U.S. regulators had expelled from the securities industry after committing fraud, and a Canadian concert promoter and multi-level marketer against whom eight judgments for more than C$372,000 had been entered in Ontario in 2008-2009 alone. Arbitrade morphed into Dignity Gold, with New York-based property developer Kent Swig among the principals. The new version of the scheme was given credibility by news outlets like Bloomberg reporting - as though it were fact - that it was backed by “a minimum of $6 billion in gold reserves”. Bloomberg did not correct its article even after OffshoreAlert informed the author the claim was false and that, while Swig was claiming to have access to billions, he was being sued by JPMorgan Chase Bank for an unpaid credit card debt of $33,982. Nearly two years after OffshoreAlert’s exposé, the assets of the scheme’s founder, Troy Hogg, were frozen by the Ontario Securities Commission as part of a fraud investigation into Arbitrade/Dignity Gold.
Timeline
02

January

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Complaint

Complaint in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. concerning Bermuda-domiciled Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
02

January

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Injunction Application

Emergency Ex Parte Motion for Injunction in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. concerning Bermuda-domiciled Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
30

January

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Defenses & Counterclaim

Defenses & Counterclaim in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
30

January

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Moas Declaration

Ronnie Moas Declaration in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
04

February

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Injunction Order

Injunction Order in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
07

March

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Motion for Order to Show Cause

Plaintiffs' Motion for Order to Show Cause in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade Ltd. at the Circuit Court of the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
09

April

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Motion to Dismiss

Motion to Dismiss in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
15

April

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Criminal Prosecution Order

Order Appointing Miami-Dade State Attorney's Office for Prosecution of Defendants in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-domiciled cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade at the Circuit Court for the Eleventh Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
25

April

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Defendants’ Exhibits & Letter of Correspondence

Defendants' Exhibits & Letter of Correspondence in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-based cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade, filed at the Circuit Court for the 11th Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
03

May

2019

James Goldberg et al v. Ronnie Moas et al: Plaintiffs’ Reply in Support of Motion to Strike Moas Declaration

Plaintiffs' Reply in Support of Motion to Strike Declaration of Ronnie Moas in James Goldberg, Stephen Braverman, and Troy Hogg v. Ronnie Moas and Standpoint Research Inc. regarding Bermuda-based cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade, filed at the Circuit Court for the 11th Judicial Circuit, in and for Miami-Dade County, Florida.
11

July

2019

Bermuda crypto firm Arbitrade’s ‘$14B gold bullion provider’ sued for fraud in US

Utah-domiciled Scotia International of Nevada Inc. a.k.a. SION, which is part of a group that Bermuda cryptocurrency firm Arbitrade claims provided it with $14 billion of gold bullion, and its president, Max Barber, are being sued in the United States over an unrelated alleged $4 million securities fraud.
08

October

2019

Bermuda crypto firm Arbitrade’s ‘$14B gold bullion provider’ sued again

Ras Al Khaimah-domiciled SION Trading FZE and Utah-domiciled Scotia International of Nevada Inc., which participated in an apparent pump-and-dump cryptocurrency fraud by Bermuda-domiciled Arbitrade Ltd., are being sued in the US for allegedly failing to pay for gold and silver that underpinned the scheme.
26

February

2020

Malcolm Duncan v. Max Barber et al: Complaint

Complaint alleging fraud regarding "gold casts of President Nelson Mandela's hands" and a Bermuda/Canada-based cryptocurrency group known as 'Arbitrade' in Malcolm Duncan, of Texas v. Max Barber, of Utah; SION Trading FZE, of Ras Al Khaimah, in the United Arab Emirates, and Barlan Enterprises Ltd., d.b.a. Guernsey's, of New York, at the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.
27

February

2020

Fraud lawsuit filed over crypto scam group’s ‘Hands of Mandela gold casts’

A complaint alleging fraud has been filed in New York regarding a deal to sell purported "gold casts of President Nelson Mandela's hands" to the Bermuda/Canada-domiciled Arbitrade Group, whose cryptocurrency scam was exposed by OffshoreAlert last year.
04

March

2020

‘Billion Dollar’ crypto gold firm sued for unpaid rent of $6,632

Scotia International of Nevada, which claims to own gold worth billions of dollars as part of a cryptocurrency-based investment fraud by Bermuda/Canada-domiciled Arbitrade and Delaware-domiciled Dignity Holdings, is being sued for unpaid rent of $6,632 in Utah. It's the fifth lawsuit against the SION group over the last eight months.
Max Warren Barber
29

April

2020

Judgment for $427K against firms involved in Bermuda/US crypto scam

A judgment for $427,552 has been entered against UAE-domiciled SION Trading and Utah-based Scotia International of Nevada for non-payment of gold and silver that was used for a cryptocurrency scam that began in Canada, moved to Bermuda, and is currently being conducted by firms in Delaware.
29

June

2020

Troy Hogg v. Stephen Braverman et al: Complaint

Complaint for damages of $705,271 and an application for a preliminary injunction in Troy Hogg, of Ontario, Canada v. Stephen Braverman, described as a resident of California; Rozgold Capital LLC, described as a California company; Olde Monmouth Stock Transfer Inc., described as a New Jersey company, formerly known as Next Group Holdings Inc., based in Atlantic Highlands, NJ, and Cuentas Inc., described as a Florida company based in Miami, FL, at the U. S. District Court for the Eastern District of New York.
22

July

2020

Cryptocurrency group Arbitrade sued in Bermuda for ‘unpaid rates’

Fraudulent cryptocurrency group Arbitrade, which purchased a seven-floor office building in Bermuda in 2018 that it has apparently never occupied, is being sued for $168,101 in allegedly unpaid "rates" by the municipal government that administers the jurisdiction's capital city of Hamilton, where the property is located.
17

September

2020

Malcolm Duncan v. Max Barber et al: Receivership Motion

Malcolm Duncan's Motion for an Order "appointing a receiver to sell the set of Nelson Mandela gold hands and accompanying certificates of authentication (the "Mandela Hands"); and (ii) modifying the February 27, 2020 temporary restraining order to permit the receiver to sell the Mandela Hands" in Malcolm Duncan, a citizen of South Africa v. Max Barber, SION Trading FZE, of Ras Al Khaimah, in the United Arab Emirates, and Barlan Enterprises Ltd., d.b.a. Guernsey's, a firm of auctioneers based in New York, at the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.
30

September

2020

Malcolm Duncan v. Max Barber et al: Receivership Motion Opposition

Max Barber's Opposition to Malcolm Duncan's Motion for an Order "appointing a receiver to sell the set of Nelson Mandela gold hands and accompanying certificates of authentication (the "Mandela Hands"); and (ii) modifying the February 27, 2020 temporary restraining order to permit the receiver to sell the Mandela Hands" in Malcolm Duncan, a citizen of South Africa v. Max Barber, SION Trading FZE, of Ras Al Khaimah, in the United Arab Emirates, and Barlan Enterprises Ltd., d.b.a. Guernsey's, a firm of auctioneers based in New York, at the Supreme Court of the State of New York, County of New York.
17

November

2020

Ontario Securities Commission v. Troy Hogg et al: Asset Freeze Application

Application by the Ontario Securities Commission to continue an asset freeze direction against Troy Richard James Hogg, Cryptobontix Inc., Gables Holdings Inc., and Colonial Hotel (Grand Bend) Limited, all of Canada, as part of an investigation into a suspected cryptocurrency-based investment fraud, filed at Ontario Superior Court.
21

January

2021

UAE ‘gold supplier’ SION Trading sued for ‘$5M fraud’

UAE-domiciled purported gold supplier SION Trading FZE, which has been implicated in several fraudulent schemes, including a cryptocurrency scam involving Bermuda-based Arbitrade, is being sued in Utah along with individuals and firms in or from Barbados, Canada, England, Panama, St. Lucia, and the USA for allegedly perpetrating a $5 million 'advance fee' fraud.
02

February

2021

Tommy Alastra v. Troy Hogg: First Amended Complaint

First Amended Complaint alleging fraud and breach of contract involving "a scam by Hogg, a purportedly wealthy and successful businessman, who promised plaintiff that he would fund $150,000 for an Oscars-related event and $50,000 for a film project, and then reneged on his promises, causing plaintiff financial and reputational damage" in Tommy Alastra v. Troy James Hogg, a citizen of Canada, at the Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles.