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David Zaslowsky

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BitMEX is one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading platforms. Last year, the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York entered a Consent Order that the U.S. Commodities Futures and Trading Commission agreed to with five companies charged with operating BitMEX. The order required the BitMEX entities to pay a $100 million civil monetary penalty. (read more here). Earlier this year, the three co-founders of the company plead guilty to violating the Bank Secrecy Act…

For those who have followed for some time the law that has developed around blockchain, there is a strong likelihood they associate the term DAO (decentralized autonomous organization) with the well-publicized hack that took place in 2016 with respect to one of the relatively early ICOs (initial coin offering) of an organization called Slock.it UG. The objective of that DAO — referred to as The DAO — was to operate a for-profit entity that would…

On April 25, 2022, European Central Bank Executive Board member Fabio Panetta delivered a speech at Columbia University in New York in which he was very critical of cryptoassets. As indicated in the title of the speech — “For a Few Cryptos More: the Wild West of Crypto Finance” — Mr. Panetta compared cryptocurrencies to the Wild West gold rush in the United States in the second half of the 19th century (while also working…

On April 27, 2022, lawmakers in the Central African Republic unanimously approved legislation that made Bitcoin legal tender.  Bitcoin can now be accepted alongside the CFA Franc.  The CAR is one of six central African countries (Cameroon, Chad, Republic of Congo, Gabon and Equatorial Guinea ) that share the CFA franc — a regional currency that is backed by France and pegged to the Euro. Opposition leaders are apparently challenging the move and are concerned…

We have written often about how the US SEC has, to date, refused to authorize a spot Bitcoin exchange traded fund (click here), while other countries such as Canada have done so (click here). Australia’s main market, the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX), has now given the green light for its first Bitcoin ETF, as reported by the Australian Financial Review. Cosmos Asset Management could launch its bitcoin ETF as early as April 27. Interestingly, however,…

On April 7, 2022, the US Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC) issued a Financial Institution Letter (“FIL”) requiring that all FDIC-supervised institutions that intend to engage in, or that are engaged in, any activities involving or related to crypto assets notify the FDIC. Because the overwhelming majority of U.S. banks are insured by the FDIC, the FIL means that nearly all banks must now disclose their crypto activities to the FDIC. The definition of crypto…

In a Statement published on March 23, 2022 (as translated using Google Translate), the Thai Securities and Exchange Commission announced that, starting April 1, 2022, digital assets (e.g., Bitcoin) will be banned as a method of payment. Business operators who find that customers are using digital assets to pay for goods or services must notify the user and take action against them, such as suspending or terminating their accounts. The Statement provided a number of…

An earlier post discussed that BitMEX, one of the world’s largest cryptocurrency trading platforms, entered a Consent Order with the U.S Commodities Futures and Trading Commission under which it agreed to pay a $100 million civil monetary penalty. Subsequently, in February 2022, two BitMEX co-founders, Arthur Hayes and Benjamin Delo, pled guilty to violating the BSA in February 2022. On March 9, 2022, the third co-founder, Samuel Reed, pled guilty to violating the Bank Secrecy…

We previously reported about a case in which a Tennessee couple, the Jarretts, sued the U.S. Internal Revenue Service seeking a refund for taxes they paid on Tezos tokens that they earned through staking. On February 14, 2022, the IRS delivered the requested refund with interest, thinking that would end the lawsuit. But the Jarretts “rejected” the refund and argued that their lawsuit should continue. The IRS has now moved to dismiss the case. One…

In November 2021, Floki Inu, a cryptocurrency, ran an ad across the London Underground. The ad had an image of a cartoon dog wearing a Viking helmet. The text stated “MISSED DOGE. GET FLOKI”. Smaller text at the bottom of the ad said, “Your investment may go down as well as up in value. Crypto currency is not regulated in the UK.” The U.K.’s Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) challenged the ad. Floki Inu explained that…