Breaking News- Austrian regulator closes crypto exchange in Wirecard environment

German prosecutors charge P2P with money laundering
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The Austrian crypto trading platform XTrader24 (www.trader24.com) a/k/a CoinFinder (www.coinfinder.at) was founded by former police officers Christoph Gsottbauer and Markus Sperr. They also established the private investigation company PRM in Vienna, which worked for Wirecard. or private detectives, received a license from the Austrian Financial Market Authority FMA in June 2020. Due to numerous, serious violations of the Austrian Money Laundering Act, the FMA revoked the license on 16 Dec 2021. The police officers behind XTrader24 are said to have spied on critics for Wirecard.

Key data

BrandsXTrader24, CoinFinder,
Legal entityXTrader24 GmbH (Austria), PRM GmbH (Austria), Metamorphoses GmbH (Germany)
Related individualsChristoph Gsottbauer, Markus Sperr, Thomas Sperr, Otto-Philip Braun
Related casesWirecard
Regulatory actionsFMA revoked license on 16 Dec 2021 (link)

The registration was revoked due to numerous, serious violations or breaches of duty against the Financial Market Money Laundering Act.

Austrian FMA press release issued on Dec 27, 2021

Former police officers and money-laundering

former police officer and XTrader24 CEO Thomas Sperr allegedly involved in crypto money laundering

In December 2016, former police officers Christoph Gsottbauer (pictured right) and Markus Sperr, and his brother Thomas Sperr (LinkedIn, pictured left) established the crypto broker XTrader24 GmbH, registered in the Austrian companies register with company number FN464631g:

former police officer Christoph Gsottbauer allegedly involved in crypt money laundering
  • Thomas Sperr is the only registered director and CEO;
  • Christoph Gsottbauer and Markus Sperr are ultimate beneficial owners;
  • Another shareholder is the German blockchain investment company Metamorphoses GmbH (companies register) controlled by the rich heir Otto-Philipp Braun (LinkedIn).

The XTrader24 guys boasted about their excellent connections to Dubai and the Middle East; Christoph Gsottbauer used to be ad Dubai resident. Moreover, they claimed to have sources within the Austrian authorities, the parliamentary inquiry suggests. XTrader24 and CoinFinder allegedly were involved in massive money laundering activities, the FMA found and consequently had to revoke the license. The websites are already offline. The website visitors of XTrader or CoinFinder are shown the maintenance mode only. RIP XTrader24.

Markus Sperr is also the operator of the website HuntingTrip24 (www.huntingtrip24.com).

Wirecard Connection

A parliamentary inquiry from February 2021 reveals that the former police officer’s detective agency, PRM GmbH (see companies register), has spied on critics on behalf of Wirecard. The question now arises whether other, crypto-based services were provided to Wirecard.

At this point, we cannot say whether Xtrader24 or CoinFinder were also involved in other Wirecard activities. Allegedly, almost €2B is still missing. We are still waiting for information from our informants in this regard. We will investigate further and report back. Stay tuned.

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