A New York federal judge ruled that U.S securities law can be applicable to crypto in order to prosecute fraud allegations concerning cryptocurrencies.
District Judge Raymond Dearie, ruled, in what appears to be the first case against a matter such as this that allegedly Brooklyn resident defrauded investors using cryptocurrencies that this process can continue. He explained that securities laws should and must be implemented while dismissing a motion to drop the chargers of the alleged defendant. The defendant lawyers argued that this issue didn’t fall under the Securities Exchange Act.
However, Judge Dearie stated:
“The question is whether the ‘elements of a profit-seeking business venture’ are sufficiently alleged in the indictment, such that, if proven at trial, a reasonable jury could conclude that ‘investors provide[d] the capital and share[d] in the earnings and profits; [and] the promoters manage[d], control[ed] and operate[d] the enterprise.’ For present purposes, we conclude that they are.”
The defendant’s attorneys didn’t respond or have any comment on this matter since there were no known cases where any similar court decisions were applied. According to the prosecutors, the defendant gained at least $300,000 from investors last year, by a cryptocurrency named REcoin that promised to be backed up by real estate.
The judge did, however, emphasize that it is up to the jury to make the final decision but to try their best to take all the circumstances into consideration. The defendant’s lawyers would have to make their case in court and prove that the securities laws can’t and are not applicable.
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