• The SEC fined BitConnect promoters $3.5 million and ordered them to hand over 190 bitcoins

  • The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) of the United States has handed down its decision on three key individuals associated with the now-defunct BitConnect project.

    The SEC ordered the project’s closure in 2018, leaving many investors out of pocket.

    However, according to a recent SEC filing, enforcement against previous promoters of the project is still ongoing. According to the filing, Bitconnect promoters Michael Noble and Joshua Jeppesen, as well as relief defendant Laura Mascola, have received final SEC judgment.

    Penalties are being levied against BitConnect promoters.

    The SEC has determined that Jeppesen must pay $3 million in disgorgement and prejudgment interest. Jeppesen will also be fined $150,000 and ordered to surrender 190 Bitcoin worth approximately $9.2 million.

    Noble will be required to pay disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and a civil penalty in an amount to be determined by the court on the Commission’s motion at a later date.

    Finally, Mascola must pay $576,358 in disgorgement and prejudgment interest.

    According to the SEC, Noble promoted BitConnect and marketed and sold securities through its “lending program.” Furthermore, according to the decision, “Noble offered and sold the securities without registering the securities offering with the Commission, and without being registered as a broker-dealer with the Commission, as required by federal securities laws.”

    According to the SEC, Jeppesen “served as a liaison between BitConnect and promoters and represented BitConnect at conferences and promotional events,” and Mascola “received certain proceeds from Jeppesen’s BitConnect activities.”

    In addition, the SEC recently filed a lawsuit against five BitConnect promoters for selling unregistered securities. The SEC targeted YouTube channels for marketing the unregistered lending platform in the most recent case, which occurred in May 2021. The SEC closed the case by charging four people, stating, “We allege that these defendants unlawfully sold unregistered digital asset securities to retail investors by actively promoting the BitConnect lending program.” We will seek to hold those who illegally profit from the public’s interest in digital assets accountable.”

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