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Allegations of running pump and dump schemes surface against former head of OpenSea Ventures

by Melai Briones

Grave allegations have emerged against Kevin Pawlak, the former head of OpenSea Ventures, accusing him of involvement in pump and dump schemes. These allegations were brought to light by NFT Ethics, an investigative news account focused on non-fungible tokens (NFTs), and claim that Pawlak conducted fraudulent activities under various pseudonyms.

The evidence against Pawlak was uncovered last month by NFT Ethics. The investigation revealed that Pawlak was the owner of the Twitter account @0xSisyphus, which was linked to suspicious business dealings and pump and dump schemes. Blockchain data also indicated that Pawlak registered multiple Ethereum addresses associated with dubious activities.

One of the significant allegations against Pawlak is his alleged involvement in the $60 million AnubisDAO rugpull in October 2021. NFT Ethics claimed that Pawlak played a dubious role in the rugpull and had a hand in a “Rollbit shill.” The investigative account also questioned Pawlak’s potential involvement in other pump and dump schemes, urging for a thorough investigation into his crypto and fiat funds.

NFT Ethics presented an alternative theory to the Anubis rugpull, suggesting that Pawlak orchestrated the rugpull with a co-conspirator and framed Ethan Cheung, the custodian of the project’s funds. Screenshots from Anubis team chat logs were shared, indicating that Pawlak, operating as Sisyphus, was the mastermind behind the project and made all significant decisions.

The allegations against Pawlak have been backed by journalist Tim Copeland from The Block, who confirmed Sisyphus’ identity through undisclosed sources. It is worth noting that Pawlak’s association with OpenSea, a leading NFT marketplace, has raised concerns about the platform’s reputation.

In response to the allegations, OpenSea issued a statement clarifying that Pawlak left the company in June 2023 and had a limited role during his tenure. OpenSea distanced itself from Pawlak’s alleged involvement in the projects in question, emphasizing that they occurred before his time at the company.

These allegations against Pawlak raise serious concerns about the credibility and trustworthiness of individuals involved in the NFT space. As the NFT market continues to expand, it is crucial to ensure the transparency and integrity of all players involved. The allegations against Pawlak serve as a reminder for users to conduct due diligence and be cautious when engaging in NFT-related activities.

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