Charlie Shrem, 33, was born in Brooklyn, New York. A graduate of the Yeshiva of Flatbush high school, Shrem founded the now-defunct BitInstant, and is a founding member of the Bitcoin Foundation. He is also a federal ex-con.
According to a 2019 New York Post article based on a then-new book by Ben Mezrich, when Cameron and Tyler Winklevoss attended a 2012 meeting about Bitcoin, they were expecting a professional introduction to a business opportunity in cryptocurrency. Instead, they got, as the Post put it: “…a 22-year-old Orthodox Jewish stoner living in his parents’ Brooklyn basement. Charlie Shrem was the founder of BitInstant, one of the first firms to buy Bitcoin for clients. In his Midtown office, with weed paraphernalia on every shelf, he kept three bongs on his desk — and was toking from one as he met the millionaires. “Welcome to the ‘Bakery,’ gentlemen,” said Shrem.”
On January 26, 2014, on returning from an e-commerce convention, Shrem was arrested at John F. Kennedy International Airport. Prosecutors alleged that Shrem and Robert Faiella conspired to launder $1 million worth of bitcoins to help users of the Silk Road darknet marketplace anonymously make illegal purchases. Shrem was also charged with failing to report suspicious banking activity and operating an unlicensed money-transmitting business. Two days later, Shrem was released on $1 million bail, which included electronic monitoring, and a requirement that Shrem live with his parents. It was back to the basement for Shrem.
On April 10, 2014, Shrem was indicted on accusations of “operating an unlicensed money transmitting business, money laundering conspiracy and willfully failing to file suspicious activity reports with banking authorities.” On September 4, 2014, Shrem pleaded guilty to a reduced charge of aiding and abetting unlicensed money transmission. On December 19, 2014, Shrem was convicted ordered to forfeit $950,000, and sentenced to two years in prison. He surrendered to authorities on March 30, 2015, and subsequently entered Lewisburg Federal Prison Camp in Pennsylvania. He was released from prison on September 16, 2016.
According to Wikipedia — which lists the wrong release date for Shrem’s prison stint — in September 2018, the Winklevoss twins sued Shrem for $32 million, claiming that he stole thousands of bitcoins from them in 2012. An affidavit filed in that case suggested that the $950,000 restitution required in Shrem’s 2014 conviction had not been paid. In 2019, a judge overturned an order freezing $32 million of Shrem’s assets, ordered the Winklevoss twins to pay Shrem’s legal fees, and the case was dismissed.
In 2017, Shrem joined Jaxx and served as its chief operating officer, subsequently founding the cryptocurrency advisory firm CryptoIQ.
An impressive post-prison turnaround… but why hasn’t he registered his car?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Llyr7sd3TBs ** (Disclaimer: This video content is intended for educational and informational purposes only) **