‘The Lord Told Us To’: Pastor Issues Statement After Pocketing $1.3 Million In Christian Crypto Scam

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Samuel Spencer Contributor
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A Colorado-based pastor has issued a statement after being accused of pocketing $1.3 million as part of a crypto scam targeting Christians.

Eli Regalado, the pastor of an online church, conspired with his wife to raise millions of dollars, much of which was used for “their own personal benefit,” according to a Thursday statement from the Colorado Division of Securities.

Securities Commissioner Tung Chan filed civil fraud charges against the couple, alleging that the church’s cryptocurrency, INDXcoin, was “illiquid and practically worthless,” the Division’s statement read. An investigation spanning from June 2022 to April 2023 found that the couple had raised nearly $3.2 million from over 300 individuals.

The couple allegedly spent their investors’ funds on a Range Rover, luxury handbags, jewelry, an au pair, boat rentals and snowmobile trips, according to NBC News.

“We allege that Mr. Regalado took advantage of the trust and faith of his own Christian community and that he peddled outlandish promises of wealth to them when he sold them essentially worthless cryptocurrencies,” Commissioner Chan said in a statement. “New coins and new exchanges are easy to create with open source code. We want to remind consumers to be very skeptical.”

Regalado responded by posting a video online to his INDXcoin community website. He begins by admitting that he and his wife are being charged by the Colorado Division of Securities.

Regarding the claim that the couple pocketed $1.3 million, Regalado admits in the video that “those charges are true.” However, the online pastor claims that half of that money was sent to the IRS and that “a few hundred thousand dollars” went into a home remodel that “the Lord told us to do.”

Many of Regalado’s online followers have posted comments on the video expressing their support for him. (RELATED: Cops Arrest Teacher, Youth Church Leader And Coach For Separate Alleged Sex Crimes Against Dependents, Minors: Cops)

“What a crazy ride Eli. I can’t imagine what you guys are going through. Prayers going up,” wrote commenter Robert M. Caruso, while commenter Sue Schneider assured Regalado that “God is not done and He will do a new thing.”

Regalado, his wife, and companies are being charged with securities fraud, unlicensed broker-dealer activity, selling unregistered securities and imposition of constructive trust, according to NBC News. They are expected to appear in the Denver District Court next week, according to the court docket.