Bitwise co-founders’ next court date pushed again. Here’s why

Jake Soberal and Irma Olguin, Jr. have been in negotiations with prosecutors on a potential plea.

The criminal case against former Bitwise Industries CEOs Jake Soberal and Irma Olguin Jr. has been delayed one more time. 

U.S. Magistrate Judge Stanley Boone postponed the hearing that was scheduled for Thursday as Soberal and Olguin work on a plea deal. 


The big picture: Boone said in the postponement that this will be the final time the hearing will be delayed. 

  • Federal attorneys and the lawyers representing Soberal and Olguin have signaled in their request for the delay that a plea deal is near. 
  • “The parties anticipate finalizing and filing plea and charging documents and requesting a change of plea hearing before a United State District Judge,” the attorneys wrote in the joint request. “The parties agree that good cause exists for the continuance because the extension is required to allow defense counsel reasonable time to continue their review of the discovery, and for the parties to finalize a pre-indictment resolution of the case.” 
  • The hearing had already been delayed from April 4. 

The backstory: Soberal and Olguin face one charge of conspiracy to commit wire fraud in excess of $100 million. 

  • They pleaded not guilty in federal court to the fraud charge last November after being accused of falsifying financial records and lying to investors. 
  • They also face a complaint from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission alleging that they misled investors about finances relating to $70 million that was raised for the failed company in 2022. 
  • Soberal and Olguin already agreed to a judgment with the SEC. 
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