A Bulgarian woman, also known as “Cryptoqueen”, has been added to the FBI’s list of its 10 most wanted fugitives.

Ruja Ignatova is accused of defrauding investors out of $4bn (£3.3bn) by selling a fake cryptocurrency called OneCoin.

Ignatova, a German citizen, disappeared in late 2017 after bugging an apartment belonging to her American boyfriend and learning he was cooperating with an FBI investigation into OneCoin, prosecutors said.

She boarded a flight from Bulgaria to Greece and has not been seen since.

The FBI is offering a $100,000 (£82,463) reward for information leading to his capture.

Ignatova is believed to be traveling with armed guards and/or associates, the office said, adding that she may have undergone plastic surgery or altered her appearance.

The 42-year-old was charged in 2019 with eight counts, including wire fraud and securities fraud, for running Bulgaria-based OneCoin Ltd as part of a pyramid scheme.

Prosecutors say the company offered commissions to members to entice others into buying worthless cryptocurrency.

“She timed her scheme perfectly, capitalizing on the frenzied speculation of early cryptocurrency,” said Damian Williams, Manhattan’s top federal prosecutor.

He described OneCoin as “one of the biggest Ponzi schemes in history”.

The FBI adds fugitives to its “Most Wanted” list when it believes the public may be able to help track down suspects.

Michael Driscoll, deputy director of the FBI in New York, said Ignatova “left with a huge amount of money”.

“Money can buy a lot of friends, and I imagine she benefits from that.”

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