Ex-Coinbase Manager Charged in First Ever Crypto Insider Case

Ex-Coinbase Manager Charged in First Ever Crypto Insider Case
  • The US charged three persons in the first ever crypto insider trading scheme.
  • Ex-Coinbase manager, Ishan Wahi, his brother, and friend was charged with two counts of wire fraud conspiracy and one count of wire fraud.
  • Wahi, who attempted to flee the US in May, was stopped by authorities to face the charges.

Philip Martin, the Chief Security Officer (CSO) of Coinbase, announced that they identified a former product manager at the crypto exchange who shared confidential information about Coinbase’s asset listing.

32-year-old Ishan Wahi, a former coinbase employee, reportedly tipped his brother, Nikhil Wahi, 26, and his friend Sameer Ramani, 33, about assets that were going to be listed on Coinbase Exchange. These individuals have been charged with the first ever crypto insider trading tipping scheme.

Since mid-April, Martin and his team have been conducting an investigation after an ETH address that bought hundreds of thousands of dollars of featured token in Coinbase Asset Listing 24 hours before it was published. 

Being a former Coinbase product manager, Wahi knew in advance what asset Coinbase was planning to list. The former Coinbase employee “misappropriated that Coinbase confidential information” by tipping his brother or friend in order for them to acquire those assets before Coinbase’s public listing announcements.

According to the press release, Wahi has been doing this scheme from June 2021 through April 2022 at least fourteen separate public listing announcements that involve at least 25 different cryptocurrencies.

“As a result of the insider trading scheme, NIKHIL WAHI and RAMANI collectively generated realized and unrealized gains totaling at least approximately $1.5 million,” stated in the press release.

The US Attorney’s Office Southern District of New York and the New York Field Office of the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) charged each of the three with two counts of wire fraud conspiracy and one count of wire fraud. Each charge carries a maximum of 20 years sentence.

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Bryan is a gamer who became genuinely interested in crypto after his initial exposure to Play-to-Earn games like Axie Infinity and Pegaxy. He has basic knowledge of technical analysis and is keeping an eye out for interesting developments in the metaverse and GameFi space.