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CFTC Sues Crypto Trader Over Alleged Mango Markets Scam

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CFTC Sues Crypto Trader Over Alleged Mango Markets Scam


The Mango Markets exploit, which was just one of the number of hacked and exploited dApps last year, was a remarkable one. The exploit led to roughly $114 million lost from the decentralized digital-asset exchange trading platform.

According to the latest update, it seems as though Justice is about to be served as the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) filed a lawsuit against the attacker, which happens to be crypto trader Avraham Eisenberg. 

CFTC Sues Mango Market Attacker

Per a complaint issued by the regulator on Monday, Eisenberg carried out a “manipulative and deceptive scheme” in October, last year to pump up the price of swaps the decentralized digital-asset exchange Mango Markets, offered at the time by “culminating in the misappropriation of the funds.”

Initially, Eisenberg was arrested in Puerto Rico last month and charged with fraud by prosecutors in New York over the Mango Market attack. At first, Eisenberg appeared innocent as he almost walked away with $50 million worth of digital assets and even defended his actions as legal in the fallout of the incident.

Though details about the filed lawsuit are yet to be revealed, Eisenberg is likely to face a hearing in court and punishment against his criminal charges as the US CFTC regulators are now taking up the matter. 

Flashback To The Mango Market Exploit

Being as significant as the other exploit incidents late last year, the Mango Markets resulted in many people questioning the security of dApps as the incident was not just a hack but “market manipulation.”  

Eisenberg reportedly manipulated the price oracle data of the Mango Markets native token (MNGO) to execute secure under-collateralized crypto loans from the Mango treasury. Using two Mango Markets accounts controlled by him, Eisenberg was able to manipulate the MNGO perpetual swap by going short on one and hedging his position on another. 

He initially deposited 5 million USD Coin (USDC) to the network before opening the massive big long position. He then bought 438 million Mango tokens and quickly totaled millions of dollars in unrealized profits.

This pushed up MNGO price by over 2,000%, from $0.038 to a peak of $0.91, allowing him to borrow and withdraw about $114 million worth of cryptocurrencies, which came from the deposits of other investors on the exchange. 

Despite the illegalities in what Eisenberg did, he still sent out a proposal to the Mango Markets decentralized governance platform for a bounty. Eisenberg proposed he would send back $50 million worth of the crypto he stole if Mango Markets should use the $70 million USDC in its treasury to clear bad debt and also pay back all users without bad debt.

Adding that, the Mango Markets team should not call out a criminal investigation or freeze the stolen funds if the proposal passes. Following the exploitation, the MNGO token suffered a significant plummet in price. However, alongside other DeFi tokens, MNGO has so far been recovering bit by bit.

Mango Markets price chart on TradingView
MNGO price is moving sideways on the 4-hour chart. Source: MNGO/USDT on TradingView.com

At the time of writing, MNGO trades at a market price of  0.01944, up by 1% in the last 24 hours and with a trading volume of $19,718 in the same time period.

Featured image from Pixabay, chart from TradingView

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