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OpenSea is “unaware” that a former executive was involved in a $60 million rug pull

A former employee of the NFT platform OpenSea has found themselves ensnared in allegations of aiding and abetting the notorious AnubisDAO rug pull of 2021, yet skeptics have raised their voices in dissent.

OpenSea, a platform for nonfungible tokens (NFTs), asserts its complete lack of awareness regarding any incriminating evidence linking a former member of their team to the infamous AnubisDAO rug pull of 2021. These allegations surfaced recently on social media, igniting a discussion thread dated October 6, posted on X (formerly known as Twitter) by the enigmatic account NFT Ethics, who tagged OpenSea in their post. NFT Ethics posed a pointed question, inquiring about OpenSea’s response to claims associating their former Head of Ventures, Kevin Pawlak, with the enigmatic identity “0xSisyphus” and his purported involvement in “questionable financial transactions.”

Both NFT Ethics and the blockchain analysis account Lookonchain made the audacious assertion that 0xSisyphus, and therefore Kevin Pawlak, played a pivotal role in inflating the AnubisDAO project’s value to unsuspecting investors just before the project rerouted the freshly acquired funds to a network of external wallets.

NFT Ethics’ thread further contended that Pawlak’s supposed complicity in the AnubisDAO rug pull was a meticulously planned collaboration with other developers, with the ill-gotten gains laundered through the meme-inspired cryptocurrency Pepe (PEPE).

Nevertheless, an official spokesperson from OpenSea conveyed to Cointelegraph that they possessed no knowledge of Pawlak’s participation in such activities. The spokesperson did clarify, however, that Pawlak’s role within the organization was significantly circumscribed.

“Kevin is a former employee who parted ways with the company in June 2023. His role at OpenSea was confined to non-managerial responsibilities. We have no records of his engagement with the projects in question.”

The company representative went on to assert, “Furthermore, we maintain no affiliations or information pertaining to the aforementioned projects, as they predate Kevin’s tenure at OpenSea.”

In October of 2021, AnubisDAO managed to secure an impressive 13,556 Ether, equivalent to $60 million at that time, from cryptocurrency investors. However, a mere 20 hours later, these funds were distributed among several disparate wallet addresses, resulting in instantaneous losses for the unsuspecting investors.

ZachXBT, a meticulous blockchain investigator, appeared to cast doubt on the allegations, characterizing the thread as “rather middling” in its approach. He posited that much of the discourse seemed to hinge upon unfounded assumptions regarding 0xSisyphus’ role in the alleged rug pull, lacking concrete evidence.

It’s worth noting that 0xSisyphus had previously offered a substantial 1,000 ETH bounty to anyone capable of unmasking the wallet address responsible for the fund drain. This initiative led to interactions with law enforcement entities in both the United States and Hong Kong, further intensifying skepticism surrounding the new allegations.

ZachXBT stated, “While Sisyphus may be culpable for gross negligence in terms of falsifying information about the Anubis team’s multisig, it doesn’t necessarily imply embezzlement from their own project. As far as my knowledge extends, Sisyphus was the sole team member engaging with the Department of Homeland Security.”

He also posed a probing question, “Do you truly believe they wouldn’t have scrutinized him first and monitored his activities?”

Furthermore, ZachXBT clarified that the two primary actors responsible for the financial debacle in the AnubisDAO scandal remained pseudonymous figures, known only as “Beerus” and “Ersan.”

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