The US Department of Justice sentenced Jessica Sledge, a 40-year-old Pelahatchie resident from Mississippi to the maximum of 10 years in Federal Prison. The woman hired a “hitman” to kill her husband and gave him $10,000 in bitcoin.
The authorities also jailed Zachary Matar and Jeremy McAlpine, both residents of Orange County, for luring more than 2,000 investors into a scam crypto scheme. The former will spend 36 month behind bars while the latter will be held for 30 months.
American law enforcement officers received information in September 2021 that Jessica Sledge had hired an online murderer. One month later, she gave him $10,000 in bitcoin to kill her husband.
Unaware of Sledge’s intentions, an undercover officer from the police contacted her and identified himself as the “hitman” she had appointed for the job. After a series recorded conversations, she confirmed that the crypto transaction was legitimate and its purpose.
Sledge met the FBI agent she believed to be the assassin in November 2021. She gave him a cash payment and again proved her murder plot.
The authorities were able to gather enough evidence to charge her. A recent announcement by United States District Judge Carlton W. Reeves stated that she was sentenced to 120 months imprisonment. A $1,000 fine will be assessed and law enforcement agents will closely monitor her actions for three years following her release.
The American authorities were able to operate with precision and the intended victim was left “ultimately unscathed.”
Too Jail for Crypto Scammers
Two other people were sentenced by the US Department of Justice for crimes related digital assets. Dropil Inc was founded by Zachary Matar and Jeremy McAlpine, both residents of Orange County in California. It provides investment services for cryptocurrency. The company also issued its own tokens, DROPs.
The partners facilitated the purchase of assets by more than 2000 investors over the years. They promoted them as a suitable investment strategy in many advertisements. According to McAlpine and Matar, the tokens “ensure privacy while also providing added value and exclusivity.” Customers could expect annual returns of between 24% and 63% depending upon their “risk profile.”
The assets were not a profitable investment and the users lost their money. The Department of Justice reports that McAlpine and Matar took nearly $1.9 million from 2472 investors via the sale of 629 million DROPs.
Prosecutors claimed they had pocketed the money for their benefits, and caused “significant financial damage” to victims. The United States District Judge Cormac John Carney ordered McAlpine to serve the next three-years in Federal Prison while Matar will be sentenced to a shorter 30-month term.
Marla Brooks – Financial Analysis
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