New Jersey, Texas flag company for crypto practices
On September 17, the New Jersey Bureau of Securities (Bureau) announced a cease and desist order against a blockchain-based marketplace company for allegedly selling unregistered securities in the form of interest-earning crypto-asset accounts that raised approximately $14 billion. According to the Bureau, the company funded its cryptocurrency lending operations and proprietary trading partially through unregistered securities sales, in violation of the New Jersey Securities Law. The company allegedly solicited investments by depositing certain eligible cryptocurrencies into investors’ accounts at the company and pooling these cryptocurrencies together to fund its income generating activities, including lending and trading operations. According to the order, the company’s website fails to disclose that its product is not currently registered with any federal or state securities regulator, even though it is subject to such requirements. The Bureau also notes that this is the “second time in less than two months that the Bureau has taken action against a cryptocurrency firm for selling unregistered securities in New Jersey.” (Covered by InfoBytes here.)
The same day, the Texas State Securities Board issued a notice of hearing to determine whether to issue a proposal for decision for the entry of a cease and desist order against the company for allegedly violating the Securities Act by offering and selling securities in Texas without being registered as dealers or agents, among other things.