Jordan Belfort, always the wolf, loves crypto now – Reuters News in France and abroad

MIAMI BEACH, Fla. — Jordan Belfort was lounging by the pool on a sunny April morning, sipping Red Bull and sharing a cautionary tale. Not the usual about his imprisonment for 10 counts of securities fraud and money laundering: this time he had been the victim. Last fall, he told a group of businessmen gathered at his lavish home, a hacker stole $300,000 worth of digital tokens from his cryptocurrency wallet.

He had learned the bad news over dinner on a Friday, he said, as he told a venture capitalist friend of the time he had sunk his yacht during a drug-fueled adventure in the mid-1990s. After breaking into Mr. Belfort’s account, the hacker transferred large amounts of Ohm, a popular cryptocurrency token, to a separate wallet — a publicly visible transaction that Mr. Belfort could do nothing to reverse. “You can see where the money is,” he said. “It’s the most frustrating thing. »

Mr Belfort, 59, is best known for ‘The Wolf of Wall Street’, a revealing memoir of his debauched career in 1990s high finance, which director Martin Scorsese adapted into a 2013 film starring Leonardo DiCaprio as the hard party. protagonist. These days, the real Mr. Belfort is a consultant and sales coach, charging tens of thousands of dollars for private sessions.

This month at his Miami Beach home, he hosted nine blockchain enthusiasts and entrepreneurs for a weekend-long crypto workshop — a chance to hang out with the wolf and enjoy a “intimate financial experience” with his friends in the crypto industry.

Credit…Scott McIntyre for The New York Times

A long line of celebrities have tried to cash in on the cryptocurrency boom, appearing in widely mocked crypto ads or flogging non-fungible tokens, the unique digital collectibles known as NFTs. Mr Belfort says he refused to participate in the worst of the shilling. He declined offers to launch a line of Wolf-themed NFTs, he said, even though “I could easily make $10 million.”

He is also a recent convert away from crypto-skepticism. Not long ago he shot a Youtube video about the dangers of Bitcoin, which he called “fuckin’ madness” and “mass delirium”. Over the years, he said, he gradually changed his mind as he learned more about cryptocurrencies and prices skyrocketed.

Today, Mr. Belfort is an investor in a handful of start-ups, including one new NFT platform And one animal themed The crypto project which he says is “trying to take the ecosystem of dogs and pets and put it on the blockchain.”

Regardless of his good faith in crypto, Mr. Belfort is unquestionably qualified to tackle the subject of financial fraud, a major problem in the digital asset industry. In the 1990s, the company he founded, Stratton Oakmont, implemented a sophisticated inventory manipulation scheme. At the height of their wealth, he and his business partners used huge amounts of cocaine and quaaludes and regularly employed prostitutes. Mr. Belfort eventually served 22 months in prison.

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Jordan Belfort, always the wolf, loves crypto now – Reuters News in France and abroad

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