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DCG and Barry Silbert Seek Dismissal of $3 Billion Lawsuit

Digital Currency Group (DCG) and its CEO Barry Silbert have filed motions to dismiss a $3 billion lawsuit brought by the New York Attorney General’s Office (NYAG), contending that the fraud allegations are unfounded. The lawsuit, filed in October 2023, accused DCG, Gemini, and Genesis of defrauding investors, including thousands of New Yorkers, through the Gemini Earn investment program. DCG subsidiary Genesis settled with the NYAG in February, but the NYAG subsequently filed an expanded complaint against DCG and included Genesis as a defendant. DCG has now denied the allegations and filed motions to dismiss the lawsuit, labeling the accusations as baseless and unsupported. The motions filed by DCG and Barry Silbert indicate a vigorous defense against the NYAG's allegations, signaling their determination to refute the claims and clear their names. The legal battle underscores the contentious regulatory landscape in the cryptocurrency industry and the potential ramifications for firms...

CFTC Urges Congress for Comprehensive Crypto Regulations

In a significant development for the cryptocurrency industry, CFTC Chair Rostin Behnam emphasized the urgent need for Congress to enact comprehensive crypto regulations. Behnam highlighted the necessity for a regulatory framework that addresses the complexities of digital assets, stressing the false narrative of crypto fading away. He urged Congress to act swiftly, particularly regarding Bitcoin's status as a commodity. Concurrently, the CFTC's advisory committee voted to advance a pioneering digital assets taxonomy, aiming to provide clarity for effective regulation. Behnam's call for comprehensive crypto regulations reflects growing recognition of the industry's significance and the need for regulatory clarity to foster innovation and investor protection. The CFTC's proactive steps, including advancing a digital assets taxonomy, signify a commitment to understanding and regulating digital assets within its jurisdiction. This may prompt collaboration and clarity between regulatory...

CFTC Chairman Clashes with SEC Over Ethereum Custody Plans

CFTC Chairman Rostin Behnam has voiced disagreement with the SEC over Prometheum's Ethereum custody plans, warning of potential conflict within U.S. financial market regulations. Behnam asserted that both Bitcoin and Ethereum are commodities, contrary to the SEC's stance. He expressed concern that allowing Prometheum to custody Ethereum could create non-compliance with SEC rules for CFTC registrants listing Ether futures contracts. Behnam's testimony highlights the regulatory ambiguity surrounding Ethereum's classification as a security or commodity. The clash between the CFTC and SEC underscores the challenges of regulating digital assets within the existing framework. Behnam's call for congressional intervention reflects the need for legislative action to address regulatory gaps and ensure market integrity amid the evolving crypto landscape. The disagreement between the CFTC and SEC over Ethereum's classification shows the urgent need for regulatory clarity in the cryptocurrency...

Spain Orders Worldcoin to Halt Data Collection Amid Complaints

The Spanish Data Collection Agency (AEPD) has directed human identity-focused crypto project Worldcoin (WLD) to cease collecting personal data in Spain following multiple complaints from users. The AEPD mandates Worldcoin to stop data collection and processing, including blocking already collected data, due to alleged infringements such as insufficient information disclosure, data collection from minors, and non-withdrawable consent. The AEPD's intervention reflects growing concerns over privacy and data protection in the cryptocurrency space, particularly regarding projects like Worldcoin that gather sensitive personal information. The move underscores the need for stringent regulations and oversight to safeguard users' rights and privacy in emerging technologies. Spain's action against Worldcoin underscores the importance of regulatory compliance and accountability in the cryptocurrency sector. It highlights the challenges faced by projects that handle personal data and the...

UK Adopts OECD Cryptocurrency Reporting Standards, Enhancing Tax Transparency

The United Kingdom has officially announced its adoption of the Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development’s (OECD) cryptocurrency reporting standards into its legal and fiscal framework, following the spring budget announcement. The move aims to bolster tax transparency and curb tax evasion in the burgeoning crypto market. The Treasury projects a significant increase in tax revenue, with an expected rise of £35 million ($45 million) between 2026 and 2027, further increasing to £95 million between 2027 and 2028. The new standards, scheduled to take effect in 2026, seek to address tax transparency challenges arising from the rapid growth of fintech and the global cryptocurrency market. The UK's incorporation of OECD cryptocurrency reporting standards underscores its commitment to regulating and taxing the rapidly evolving crypto sector. By aligning with international standards, the UK aims to enhance transparency and accountability in crypto transactions, thus bolstering...

Nexo DWTC Receives Initial Approval for Crypto Operations in Dubai

In a significant development for the crypto lending sector, Nexo DWTC announced its preliminary approval from Dubai's Virtual Assets Regulatory Authority (VARA) to engage in virtual asset lending, borrowing, and broker-dealer activities within the UAE's bustling city. This provisional "Initial Approval [IA]" nod marks Nexo's entry into Dubai's rapidly expanding crypto market, positioning it as one of the early players in digital asset lending in the region. With this initial approval, Nexo DWTC is set to offer its services through the Nexo platform, ensuring compliance with regional laws and providing seamless access via both mobile and desktop interfaces. Kalin Metodiev, CFA, co-founder, and managing partner at Nexo, expressed enthusiasm about the company's strategic alignment with Dubai's Virtual Asset Regulatory Authority's guidance, highlighting their commitment to innovative market strategies tailored to Dubai's regulatory framework. Nexo's licensing journey with VARA follows a...

Stanford University’s Blyth Fund Allocates 7% of Endowment to Bitcoin Investments

Stanford University's Blyth Fund, managed by students, recently made a significant decision to allocate 7% of its endowment toward Bitcoin investments. This move, announced by Kole Lee, leader of the Stanford Blockchain Club, highlights the growing institutional interest in digital assets. According to Lee's announcement on X, Stanford Endowment purchased Bitcoin at $45,000 in February. In his pitch to the Blyth Fund, Lee emphasized the potential benefits of investing in Bitcoin, particularly focusing on ETF inflows, market cycles, and its role as a hedge against monetary instability and geopolitical tensions. Lee expressed bullish sentiments, projecting a target price range of $110,000 to $130,000 for Bitcoin, citing continued inflows into the market and the potential for short-covering rallies once Bitcoin surpasses its previous all-time high of $69,000. The Blyth Fund, established in 1978 in honor of banker Charles Blyth, is managed by students and oversees a significant portion...

Fantom Foundation Secures Legal Victory Against Multichain

The Fantom Foundation has reported a significant legal win, as the Singapore High Court has directed Multichain to provide compensation following a breach of contract. In response, Fantom plans to pursue liquidation proceedings through the court to recover community assets, including approximately $65 million in frozen stablecoins. This legal development follows a dispute dating back to July 2023 when the Multichain bridge suffered an exploit, resulting in substantial losses across various chains, including Fantom. Despite attempts to communicate with Multichain's former directors and key personnel, Fantom alleges that they were unable to resolve the matter, leading to legal action for breach of contract and fraudulent misrepresentations regarding incurred losses. The Singapore High Court recently granted Fantom a default judgment ruling in its favor, affirming the breach of contract and fraudulent representations by Multichain. Fantom now intends to leverage its financial losses to...

Coinbase Challenges SEC’s Classification of Secondary Crypto Sales

Coinbase, in its ongoing legal battle with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), has petitioned the presiding judge to disregard a previous judgment that classified secondary sales of crypto assets as "securities transactions." The move comes as Coinbase lawyers argue that the issue was never fully examined in court. In a letter addressed to U.S. District Judge Katherine Failla on March 5, Coinbase attorney Michael Savitt urged the judge to reject the SEC's classification of secondary crypto sales as securities contracts in the case involving former Coinbase product manager Ishan Wahi and others. Savitt emphasized that the judgment should carry "no weight" as the key issues were not adequately debated or examined in court. The SEC sued Ishan Wahi, his brother Nikhil Wahi, and Sameer Ramani for insider trading related to nine cryptocurrencies in July 2022. Although the Wahi brothers settled with the SEC in June 2023, the SEC obtained a default judgment against Ramani, who...

Taiwan to Propose New Digital Asset Regulations

The Financial Supervisory Commission (FSC) of Taiwan has announced plans to propose a new draft of digital asset regulations in September 2024, aiming to enhance regulations for digital asset markets and ensure investor safety. Huang Tien-mu, chairman of the FSC, highlighted the importance of effective regulations amidst the growing risks associated with digital currencies, emphasizing the need for strict penalties against fraudulent activities. The upcoming draft bill seeks to address the increasing interconnection between digital assets and the traditional financial system, with a focus on safeguarding the stability of the legacy financial system from the risks posed by digital assets. Taiwanese legislators previously introduced the Virtual Asset Management Bill to parliament, aiming to provide better protection for customers and proper supervision of the industry. The bill proposes fines for unlicensed virtual asset service providers (VASPs) ranging from two million to 20 million...

SEC Wins Partial Default Judgment in Coinbase Insider Trading Case

In the case involving former Coinbase product manager Ishan Wahi and co-defendants, Judge Tana Lin partially granted the United States Securities and Exchange Commission's (SEC) request for a default judgment against defendant Sameer Ramani. Ramani, who allegedly fled the United States and failed to respond to court summonses, faced SEC's demands for a permanent injunction, civil penalties, and disgorgement. The SEC accused Ishan Wahi and his brother Nikhil of insider trading and wire fraud, specifically related to trades made with tokens slated for listing on Coinbase after Ishan Wahi shared the exchange's plans with associates. While Lin agreed to the SEC's injunction against Ramani, she did not order prejudgment interest on disgorged funds. The SEC claimed that nine of the tokens invested in by Nikhil Wahi and Ramani were securities. Lin accepted the SEC's argument that the tokens traded by Ramani were offered and sold as investment contracts, hence classified as securities....

Virginia Senate Passes Bill to Study Crypto Ecosystem

The Virginia Senate in the United States has passed a significant bill that paves the way for the establishment of a dedicated workgroup tasked with studying the overall cryptocurrency ecosystem and making recommendations to support its growth. Introduced as Senate Bill No. 339 on Feb. 5, the bill seeks to gather recommendations on fostering and expanding blockchain technology, digital asset mining, and cryptocurrency within the state. Senator Saddam Azlan Salim proposed the bill on Jan. 9, aiming to exempt miners from the requirement to obtain money transmitter licenses and to prohibit targeted ordinances affecting digital asset mining activities. The bill received overwhelming support in the Virginia House, with 97 yeas, one nay, and two abstentions, leading to its passage on March 4. The proposed crypto workgroup will comprise 13 members, including representatives from the Senate, the House of Delegates, the blockchain industry, and local government. With a deadline of Nov. 1,...