Israeli Gal Barak was sentenced to four years in prison for investment fraud and money laundering as one of the principals of the cybercrime organization E&G Bulgaria in the Vienna Cybercrime Trials in September 2020. His wife, Marina Barak, is also charged and is currently on trial. Gal Barak is currently being extradited to Germany, where he will also be charged. In Germany, a former Bulgarian co-conspirator responsible for dozens of victims as boiler room manager is already waiting in prison. This Bulgarian going by the stage name James Morra earned a small fortune by defrauding unsuspecting victims. Here is the story.
The best horse
E&G Bulgaria has operated numerous fraudulent broker scams such as OptionStars, OptionStarsGlobal, XTraderFX, SafeMarkets, Golden Markets, or CryptoPoint. Between 2016 and 2019, E&G Bulgaria is alleged to have stolen more than €200 million from customers. This is alleged by one of the defendants. The boiler rooms for these were in Bulgaria, Serbia, Bosnia and Herzegovina, and Georgia. James Morra was one of the most successful boiler room agents.
The Bulgarian Dimitar Moraliyski a/k/a James Morra (his stage name) worked as a so-called retention manager. He was responsible for existing client-victims of the E&G Bulgaria scam network. In this position, he had to make sure that the clients did not withdraw any funds and continually deposited new money. He is said to have done his job very well and was the best horse in Gal Barak‘s cybercrime stable.
From each new deposit of a victim, James Morra received up to 10%. Born in June 1981, Morra was not a financial expert but only a talented, aggressive, and unscrupulous call center employee who lied to his victims. He didn’t have any financial education but was fluent in German. Hence, he was responsible for German-speaking victims. In some months, Morra earned more than €300,000. The data is available to police authorities in Germany and Austria. James Morro was just one of the dozens of retention managers at Barak’s E&G Bulgaria.
Now you can do the maths and calculate how many millions James Morra and his colleafues stole from his victims.
Building a fortune
James Morra did so well as a boiler room fraudster that he established his own company in Bulgaria, Finatechs. The commissions were paid from the money laundering network of Gal Barak to Morra’s FinaTechs, for example, from the offshore entity Bright Ideas Ltd. Here, we must consider that the purchasing power in Bulgaria is much lower than in the rest of the EU. In this respect, the €300,000 was worth almost twice as much in local purchasing power.
Chasing boiler rooms!
Many victims incriminate James Morra with their testimonies. In prison in Germany, Morra is now waiting for his trial. In total, German police have already arrested around 50 people from the boiler room scene in recent months during several law enforcement campaigns in the Balkans, Ukraine, and Bulgaria. More law enforcement actions and arrests are to follow. Good thing! It’s about time that people like James Morra disappear in prison. For a long time!