Celsius Network founder and CEO Alex Mashinsky is said to be looking for a way out of the United States after the company's scandalous cash shortage.
Exactly two weeks ago, the cryptocurrency lending giant paused all withdrawals, swaps and transfers, citing "extreme market conditions". Later, the company hired lawyers for the restructuring and contacted the authorities to resolve the issues. Celsius also announced that he has suspended all forms of social engagement to ensure greater attention to his situation.
Ironically, just hours before the withdrawal from the block was announced, Mashinsky sued Twitter user @mdudas for what he called forgery. The Twitter user said there were rumors of blocked accounts on Celsius, which Mashinsky called (in a deleted tweet) "FUD and misinformation."
Three days after the withdrawal stopped, he reappeared on Twitter, asking investors and customers for time and patience.
The journey of the Celsius executives was interrupted by the authorities
Now, according to cryptocurrency investor Mike Alfred, the executive has attempted to leave the United States for Israel via Morristown Airport. However, he was stopped by the authorities, but it is unclear whether he was arrested or just barred from traveling.
Alfred speculates that Mashinsky has already been contacted by the FBI and questioned about Celsius' problems. Furthermore, he says that customers are unlikely to be able to redeem the goods anytime soon:
Now it's in the hands of lawyers, for better or for worse.
Dawn Newton, COO of fraud prevention firm Netki, says Mashinsky may be safe in Israel. She says he lived there for most of his life and served in the Israeli army.
For your information: although the United States has an extradition treaty with Israel, there is a clause: "An Israeli citizen cannot be extradited except for a crime committed before becoming a citizen."
According to Alfred, Masinsky's case shows a weakness in the "simple rule" of maintaining investor confidence. The Celsius began to attract investor attention in mid-May as its yields began to decline. Investors are now rumored to be disinterested in bailing out the lending platform as it shows little sign of regaining the coveted leading position.
"Banks are not your friends"
In addition to regulators, the troubled company has attracted the attention of potential buyers. Rival lender Nexo and pro-crypto bank Goldman Sachs are among those who have offered Celsius an acquisition. The company, however, did not react to any of the offers.
The second offering is particularly shaky for Celsius, especially considering Mashinsky wasn't a fan of banks. In one of his many lectures about him, he once wore a t-shirt with the brand that read:
"Banks are not your friends"
Note that information about Mashinsky's interrupted trip to Israel lacks hard evidence at the time of writing. Meanwhile, CEL was trading at one quotation of $ 0,79 at the time of writing, after plunging 21,6% on the last day.