Logan Paul slapped with a class action lawsuit over CryptoZoo rugpull

A pixel art bear with a duckling(?) headA "Bearling" zoo creature from Paul's promised CryptoZoo game (attribution)
Logan Paul is now facing a class action lawsuit over his CryptoZoo project, a planned NFT game that Paul apparently lost interest in and abandoned — after profiting handsomely, of course, off his fans who put millions into the project.

Scam sleuth CoffeeZilla dug into the project in a multipart YouTube series recently, drawing legal threats from Paul. After plenty of negative publicity, Paul withdrew the legal threats and promised to develop a refund plan for some of the funds that were invested, though it is a small fraction of the money lost in the project.

Rather than wait to see if Paul comes through with refunding only a small portion of their money, a group has formed a class action lawsuit against Paul and others who helped with the project. The lead plaintiff put a total of around $3,000 into the project altogether.

The suit accuses Paul and his team of a whole host of charges including fraud, breach of contract, unjust enrichment, deceptive trade practices, negligence, and fraudulent misrepresentation.

Orion Protocol suffers $2.9 million hack

The decentralized exchange Orion Protocol suffered a loss of 1,757 ETH (about $2.9 million) from the company treasury funds thanks to a reentrancy attack.

Orion Protocol CEO Alexey Koloskov wrote a Twitter thread confirming the attack, but claiming that although they weren't sure how the hack was perpetrated, it wasn't due to the fault of their own code. Koloskov wrote that he thought the issue "might have been caused by a vulnerability in mixing third-party libraries in one of the smart contracts used by our experimental and private brokers."

Bonq defi borrowing project exploited

The Polygon-based defi borrowing protocol Bonq suffered an attack in which 112 million ALBT tokens and around 100 million BEUR tokens were stolen. A flaw in the protocol enabled the attacker to modify oracle prices, allowing them to mint new ALBT and BEUR for significantly less than market price.

The attacker quickly bridged the tokens to the Ethereum chain and swapped them for ETH and USDC, collectively worth around $1.7 million. The price of ALBT plunged around 50%, and the BEUR Euro-pegged stablecoin significantly lost its peg.

Rally sidechain shuts down with under a day's notice, taking users' tokens with it

Rally is an Ethereum sidechain built to support "social tokens" — typically, tokens intended for fans of various celebrities or groups.

Fans of creators including Felicia Day (actress and famous nerd), Brandon Powell (LA Rams wide receiver), and Portugal. The Man (rock band) may be disappointed, however, because Rally announced with under one day of notice that they would be shutting down. "This means that after today, the site will no longer be supported and you may experience a degradation in services or it may simply become inoperable. Additionally, since NFTs on the Rally sidechain are not transferable to mainnet, these will not be accessible once the site shuts down," they wrote in an email. The project also deleted its Twitter account.

The group behind the Rally Network had raised $57 million in funding in 2021, and was backed by VCs including Andreessen Horowitz.

Bankrupt FTX tries to claw back $446 million from bankrupt Voyager

It's no big secret that there's a lot less money actually floating around in crypto than bogus "market caps" and other numbers would have you believe, but it's being put into stark relief as the various bankrupt crypto firms fight tooth and nail over any scrap of cash that may actually remain.

In FTX's ongoing efforts to dig through the proverbial couch cushions in search of any funds that could be used to fill the gaping hole in its balance sheet, the firm has sued Voyager, a crypto broker that filed for bankruptcy in July, to try to recoup $446 million in funds that were "preferentially transferred" to Voyager when it filed for bankruptcy.

The lawsuit alleges that Voyager served as a "feeder fund" that "solicited retail investors and invested their money with little or no due diligence in cryptocurrency investment funds like Alameda and Three Arrows Capital".

Tesla lost $140 million trading Bitcoin in 2022

Elon Musk's $1.5 billion Bitcoin bet at Tesla turned out to be a bad deal. He sunk the funds into Bitcoin in January 2021, when Bitcoin was trading between $30,000 and $40,000. Simultaneously, he announced that Tesla would begin accepting Bitcoin — an announcement that was quickly reversed when someone apparently pointed out to Musk that Bitcoin is an environmental nightmare.

Tesla sold most of its Bitcoin in Q2 2022, following the grand crypto tradition of buying high and selling low.

Now, according to SEC filings, Tesla suffered a net loss of $140 million in 2022 thanks to the gamble. Their reported $64 million in trading profits were eclipsed by their $204 million loss. Tesla still holds somewhere around 11,000 BTC.

New York regulator investigates Gemini over FDIC claims

The embattled Gemini crypto exchange, which is has $900 million of customer funds locked up in the Genesis bankruptcy and has been charged by the SEC for offering unregistered securities, now has another problem to add to its list. The New York State Department of Financial Services, which is responsible for regulating the exchange portion of Gemini's business, is reportedly looking into whether Gemini misled customers that their funds were protected by FDIC insurance — that is, the insurance typically known for protecting funds placed into accounts with actual banks.

When concerned customers contacted Gemini customer support to ask if their funds were safe at Gemini, in the wake of the collapses throughout the crypto industry, they were reassured by customer support that the fiat currency held by Gemini to back their GUSD stablecoin was held in accounts that were eligible for FDIC insurance. Some customers took this to mean that their holdings with Gemini were safe and protected from the possibility of trouble at Gemini: something they've now discovered was not the case, as customers of Gemini's Earn program cannot withdraw their funds.

Cryptocurrency companies misleading or outright lying to customers about FDIC insurance has been something of a trend this year. In July, the Federal Reserve and FDIC sent a cease-and-desist letter to the bankrupt Voyager cryptocurrency broker, demanding they stop claiming that their USD-denominated funds at the company were protected by FDIC insurance (they weren't). Several weeks later, the FDIC sent a similar letter to FTX US, also demanding they stop making misleading statements about deposit insurance.

Hacked Azuki Twitter account enables theft of pricey NFTs and crypto priced at more than $1.74 million

A green zombie-looking ape with a red warty mouth and sharp teeth, with a turquoise hachimaki and a tie-dye shirtMutant Ape #16924, which most recently sold for ~$23,400 (attribution)
Hackers were able to compromise the Twitter account belonging to the popular Azuki NFT project, which they then used to promote a fake NFT drop to its 334,000 followers. Users who tried to mint the NFTs instead had their wallets emptied of pricey NFTs and cryptocurrencies.

Stolen NFTs included 74 Otherdeeds (floor price ~$2,700 each), 3 Porsche NFTs (floor ~$3,100), 57 Beanz (floor ~$2,600), 12 Doodles (floor ~$10,600), 2 Mutant Apes (floor ~$24,300), and 49 Pudgy Penguins (floor ~$9,200) to the attacker. Altogether, those stolen NFTs could fetch almost ~$1 million if sold at floor price.

One single wallet transferred 750,000 of the USDC stablecoin to the attacker, resulting in a particularly brutal loss for one individual.

Coinbase fined $3.6 million by Dutch central bank

The Dutch central bank levied a €3.3 million ($3.6 million) fine against Coinbase, who began operating in the Netherlands without properly registering. The fine is reportedly unusually large, because of Coinbase's prominence and because it had accumulated a significant number of Dutch customers without the proper registration. Coinbase had been noncompliant from November 2020 to August 2022.

Bithumb executives charged with embezzlement

South Korean prosecutors filed charges against several executives of the Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb. Those charged included its owner, Kang Jong-Hyun, and his sister Kang Ji-Yeon, who rurns Bithumb affiliates Inbiogen and Bucket Studio. The charges included embezzlement, breach of trust, and fraudulent illegal transactions. The charges follow reports that Bithumb and affiliated companies were being investigated for possible tax evasion, though those investigations are a separate matter unrelated to these charges.

In December, the largest Bithumb shareholder, Park Mo, was found dead outside his home in an apparent suicide after he was named as a suspect by prosecutors in an investigation into embezzlement and stock manipulation.

Korean prosecutors had previously charged the former chairman of Bithumb over an alleged $100 million in fraud, though he was acquitted for lack of proof.

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