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New York AG Letitia James Sues NovaTech, AWS Mining For $1 Billion Crypto Pyramid Schemes

Julia Smith
Last updated: | 2 min read

New York Attorney General Letitia James is suing crypto trading firm NovaTech, now shuttered digital asset company AWS Mining, and at least two key promoters for reportedly defrauding investors out of $1 billion, court documents from the June 6 lawsuit reveal.

New Lawsuit From NY AG Letitia James Takes Aim At Crypto Promoters

Between 2017 and 2019, AWS Mining, married couple Cynthia and Eddy Petion, and several additional associates promoted a fraud scheme that saw victims promised a 200% return on investment from mining cryptocurrencies.

“AWS Mining’s promises of guaranteed 200% returns were fraudulent and its scheme was unsustainable, because, according to defendant Cynthia Petion, AWS Mining paid returns and bonuses that were too high for too long,” the lawsuit states.

When AWS Mining finally collapsed in April 2019, most investors were left with nothing. By August of that year, the Petions launched NovaTech alongside a handful of fellow AWS Mining promoters.

While over $1 billion was supposedly deposited onto the crypto trading platform, less than $26 million was ever actually traded.

According to James’ lawsuit, the Petions carried out the pyramid schemes by targeting investors of Haitian descent who were “most in need of income and least able to afford a loss” by alleging they were the path to “financial freedom.”

“Defendants preyed upon the same victims of AWS Mining when recruiting for NovaTech, capitalizing on the exclusion of these communities from traditional markets,” the suit alleges.

The damning lawsuit then claims Cynthia Petion rebranded herself as the organization’s “Reverend CEO” and alleged NovaTech was “God’s vision” all while “promoting the schemes to investors in the Creole language and preying on their victims’ religious faith.”

Privately, Petion compared her victims to “cult” members and likened herself to a zookeeper.

“People join and follow mindlessly,” James alleges Petion wrote in one message. “They don’t think. They just agree with everything you say.”

NovaTech, AWS Mining Face Lawsuit Over Fraud Allegations

By 2022, the Petions had secretly fled to Panama, reportedly messaging another promoter U.S. officials “can’t serve you if they can’t find you lol.”

By May 2023, NovaTech officially closed while the Petions and fellow promoters of the crypto scheme “made off with millions of dollars in recruitment payments and profits.”

“NovaTech failed to return cryptocurrency deposited by investors and tens of thousands of investors were left with hundreds of millions of dollars in losses,” the lawsuit states.

Although the Petions, AWS Mining, and NovaTech were most recently hit with a $2 billion class action lawsuit in February of this year, criminal charges have not been filed.

The Petions have yet to officially publicly respond to the allegations.