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Eight Twitter finance gurus charged with criminal pump-and-dump scheme


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The Discord logo on a background of arrows going up. Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

The US Department of Justice has charged eight online finance influencers with criminal securities fraud for running a $114 million pump-and-dump scheme on their collective 1.5 million Twitter followers.

According to an indictment, members of a Discord-based forum called Atlas Trading used that platform and Twitter to promote stocks they’d purchased in large quantities, making misleading statements about the stocks’ value and their intent to hold it. Once followers had driven up the price, the group allegedly secretly sold off the stock to maximize their profits. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) filed a parallel civil complaint. Both complaints charge seven of the men directly with securities fraud, while an eighth member is...

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