Hunted Woman: Missing ‘Crypto Queen’ Suspected To Be Murdered By Bulgarian Drug Lord

Ruja Ignatova disappeared seven years ago after a warrant from US authorities was issued to arrest her. The self-proclaimed “Crypto Queen” was responsible for OneCoin’s Ponzi scheme that took $4.5 billion from investors.

Now, a BBC investigation suspects that the missing crypto scammer could have been murdered by a Bulgarian drug lord years ago.

Seven Years Since Crypto Queen’s Disappearance

In 2014, the crypto scam company OneCoin was founded by Bulgarian “entrepreneur” Ruja Ignatova. The company claimed to be the “Bitcoin Killer” with its cryptocurrency and Blockchain model. However, OneCoin was nothing more than a traditional Ponzi scheme, which stole $4.5 billion from its investors worldwide.

After its collapse in 2017, authorities continued investigating the fraudulent exchange and charged its executives, including Ignatova. In October of that year, American authorities issued an arrest warrant to capture the self-proclaimed Crypto Queen, who vanished to avoid the law.

Since her disappearance, Ignatova has been believed to be hiding, especially after being added as the only woman in the FBI’s top 10 most wanted list. However, a recent BBC report unveiled some disturbing information regarding the whereabouts of the Bulgarian criminal.

According to the BBC investigation, Ignatova is suspected by many to have been killed by his security guard, Bulgarian drug lord Hristoforos Nikos Amanatidis. The Crypto Queen’s head of security allegedly is a major organized crime figure in their home country.

Amanatidis, also known as Taki, is “a very significant, if not the most prolific, drug trafficker of all time in Bulgaria.” Taki seemingly had close links to OneCoin due to his relationship with Ignatova and was involved in the crypto scammer’s disappearance, a US government lawyer told the BBC.

How Is The Bulgarian El Chapo Linked To Ignatova?

The drug lord is believed to be a Bulgarian El Chapo or Pablo Escobar figure of sorts, according to the report, responsible for armed robbery, drug smuggling, and murder. Former Bulgarian deputy minister, Ivan Hristanov, believes Taki was the only person able to assist Ignatova in her criminal endeavors and protect her from the law. Hristanov, who has investigated the drug lord before, stated:

Taki is the ghost. You’ll never see him. You only hear about him. He’s talking to you through other people. If you don’t listen, you just disappear from earth.

The links between Taki and the Crypto Queen pile up. The drug lord is believed to live in Dubai, where Ignatova owns a luxury penthouse. Her bank accounts received millions of dollars from the Ponzi scheme. Moreover, the crypto criminal paid Taki €100,000 monthly for her protection.

Additionally, the two Bulgarian criminals were part of a complex deal to sell some land on the country’s Black Sea coast. The documents seemingly link one of Ignatova’s companies with Taki’s wife.

Hiding Or Dead, Where Is Ruja Ignatova?

Several sources believe that Ignatova may have been murdered by her protector. In 2022, Bulgarian journalist Dimitar Stoyanov led an investigation at local news outlet Bird that compiled the suspicion of many involved in Ignatova’s case.

According to the report, Stoyanov and Bird’s team was handed a police report where a police informant detailed a conversation he overheard. In the conversation, Taki’s brother-in-law admits that Ignatova had been murdered on the drug lord’s order at the end of 2018.

Allegedly, her body was dismembered and thrown off a yacht in the sea. According to Stoyanov, it is “very, very possible” as multiple criminal associates of Taki believe this theory to be true.

The associates’ rationale being that the wanted Ms Ignatova became a liability to Taki, who wished to eliminate his links to the OneCoin fraud.

Moreover, the journalist claims that since her disappearance, Taki’s associates have begun using several of Ignatova’s Bulgarian properties.

Ultimately, there isn’t enough evidence to prosecute the drug lord, and there is not a body to prove the murder, so the Crypto Queen’s whereabouts remain a mystery despite the rumors.