The Justice Department sentenced Jessica Sledge, 40, of Perahachi, Mississippi, to a statutory maximum sentence of 10 years in prison. In 2021, the woman hired a “killer” and paid him $10,000 worth of bitcoin to murder her husband.
Additionally, authorities jailed Orange County citizens — Jeremy McAlpine and Zachary Mattar — for enticing more than 2,000 investors to participate in a fraudulent crypto scheme. The former will spend 36 months in prison, while the latter will spend 30 months.
September 2021, U.S. law enforcement officers received Jessica Sledge hires information on a murderer through the dark web. A month later, she paid him $10,000 worth of bitcoin so he could kill her husband.
Realizing Sledge’s intentions, she was contacted by an undercover officer, who described herself as the “killer” she had designated to carry out the mission. After a series of recorded conversations, she confirmed the crypto transaction and its purpose.
In November 2021, Sledge agreed to meet with the FBI agent she believed to be an assassin, giving him an additional cash payment, proving her murder plot again.
Therefore, the authorities have enough evidence to arrest her.According to the most recent announcement, U.S. District Judge Carlton W. Reeves sentenced her to a statutory maximum of 120 months in prison. She must also pay a $1,000 fine, while law enforcement officers will strictly monitor her behavior for three years after her release.
The intended victim was “ultimately unharmed” due to the precise operation of the US authorities.
Jail time for crypto scammers, too
US Department of Justice Sentenced Two others have committed crimes related to digital assets. In 2017, Jeremy McAlpine and Zachary Matar (both residents of Orange County, California) founded Dropil Inc, a Belize-based company that provides cryptocurrency investment services. The company also issued its own token, DROP.
Over the years, the partners have lured more than 2,000 investors to buy these assets and promoted them as an appropriate investment strategy in numerous advertisements. The tokens are said to “ensure privacy while also providing added value and exclusivity.” McAlpine and Matar further assured clients that, depending on their “risk profile,” DROP could provide them with an annual return of 24% to 63%.
Needless to say, these assets were far from a successful investment, and users lost their funds. McAlpine and Matar lost nearly $1.9 million from 2,472 investors by selling about 629 million DROPs, according to the Justice Department.
Prosecutors accused them of pocketing the money for profit and causing “significant financial loss” to the victims. As a result of the case, U.S. District Judge Cormac J. Carney sent McAlpine to federal prison for the next three years, while Matar will reduce his sentence by 30 months.
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