Svenja Schulze
Svenja Schulze's images are being used on a deceptive Facebook page targeting crypto investors. Image by EPA PHOTO

German minister’s images used to promote ‘crypto scheme’

Bray Boland February 21, 2024

A US government-certified crypto trader has been pictured with the executive director of the World Food Program. 


False. The certification is fake and the woman pictured is not a trader but a German government minister.

A self-described cryptocurrency trader has posted pictures of herself rubbing shoulders with some of Europe’s movers and shakers.

However, a reverse image search reveals the woman pictured is not gun trader Ann Isabella as claimed. Rather, she is German minister Svenja Schulze.

Ann Isabella (archived here) is one of more than 100 supposed financial traders using deception and fake images to target Facebook users in the Pacific Islands. 

AAP FactCheck has analysed dozens of these accounts as part of a special investigation.

The account specifically targets users in Samoa and Vanuatu with the promise of quick cash through investment in cryptocurrency.

A screenshot of the profile image from the Facebook page.
 German minister Svenja Schulze is not a crypto trader. 

As well as using an image of Schulze for her profile picture, Isabella uses various other photos of the 55-year-old to promote herself.

The profile picture is taken from a March 2023 conference Schulze attended on redevelopment in Ukraine.

This photo was taken of Schulze speaking on a panel at the G20 Compact with Africa summit last year, while this image is of Schulze speaking to Cindy McCain, the executive director of the World Food Program, in Berlin in 2023.

There is no suggestion Schulze has any connection to the Isabella account.

Last October, Isabella posted an image of a “certificate of trade” from the US’s International Trade Administration (ITA) as proof of her legitimacy.

A screenshot of the supposed certificate of trade.
 The certificate of trade is a fake. 

The ITA did not respond to AAP FactCheck‘s request to assess the authenticity of the document by the time of publication. However, it does not match any certificates currently issued by the ITA.

AAP FactCheck also found dozens of accounts using the identical certificate as “proof” they are also legitimate traders, examples here, here, here, here, here and here.

Isabella also features supposed text conversations with clients accompanied by images of their bank accounts.

This post features a conversation with someone she describes as “One of our Most Esteemed Clients”.

The post also contains an image of more than $10,000 in an unnamed bank account.

A screenshot of one of the Facebook posts.
 The image of a supposed account has been used on other “trader’s” profiles. 

A reverse image search reveals the same conversation and bank account with “One of our Most Esteemed Clients” on another self-described trader’s account.

Isabella also features a post of various supposed bank transfers (here and here) with no financial institutions named on the statements.

The post also includes an image of a man holding a sign urging people to invest.

A reverse image search shows the same man pictured with a differently worded sign on a now-closed Instagram account promoting crypto investments.

The Verdict

The claim a US government-certified crypto trader has been pictured with the executive director of the World Food Program is false.

The certification is fake and the woman picture is not a crypto trader – she is German minister Svenja Schulze.

Isabella’s Facebook page also features images of supposed clients and conversations that can be found on other self-described traders’ accounts.

False — The claim is inaccurate.

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