Joshua David Nicholas fraud

Florida Scam Artist Pleads Guilty to $100 Million Fraud

09.09.2022 09:02
by Maksym Prykhodko
1 min read

Florida resident Joshua David Nicholas has pleaded guilty to one count of securities fraud. He is charged for running a Ponzi scheme that took crypto traders for some $100 million.

In a two-year period, Nicholas presented himself as a trader at the bogus crypto investment company EmpiresX. He claimed that he was an expert in the crypto space and offered investors a fake trading bot.

Along with the coconspirators, Emerson Sousa Pires and Flavio Mendes Goncalves, Nicholas took most of the investors’ money, with only a portion of it that was actually used for (unsuccessful) crypto trading on the investors’ behalf. He bought a Lamborghini and made payments on a second house.

In the meantime, Pires and Goncalves have fled back to their native country, Brazil. As for Nicholas, he is facing up to five years in jail.


  • Maksym has denied the existence of crypto as an asset for 3 years when he was working with standard financial instruments. Became Head of Treasury. Won the best bank employee award and left the bank for cryptocurrency exchange the next day. Got a second university degree, but that didn’t stop him from studying finance yet. Combines fiat and crypto experience to be as objective as possible in general matters. His dream is to be interviewed by Bloomberg.

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