Bittrex Hit With SEC Lawsuit After Deciding to Leave US

The SEC also alleged that six tokens available on Bittrex are securities

article-image

Sharaf Maksumov/Shuttertock modified by Blockworks

share

Weeks after announcing plans to permanently exit the US, Bittrex was hit with several charges from the SEC Monday. 

The SEC alleged that six tokens available on Bittrex are securities, including Algorand’s native ALGO and Dash token, the complaint noted. 

The SEC also claimed that the exchange operated as an “unregistered exchange, broker and clearing agency,” according to a statement from the agency. Bittrex’s former CEO William Shihara and international affiliate Bittrex Global GmbH are also facing charges. 

Bittrex, which revealed it would be winding down US operations earlier this month, had been tipped off in March that the SEC would proceed with a lawsuit, according to reports

In a statement earlier this month, Bittrex said it was closing down its US business because “it’s just not viable for us to continue to operate in the current U.S. regulatory and economic environment.”

SEC head Gary Gensler countered that there has been enough regulatory clarity around the crypto and exchange space for businesses to operate within the law. 

“Today’s action, yet again, makes plain that the crypto markets suffer from a lack of regulatory compliance, not a lack of regulatory clarity,” Gensler said in the statement. “Bittrex, as alleged, failed to register and comply with U.S. securities laws as an exchange, broker-dealer, and clearing agency. Cosmetic alterations did nothing to change the underlying economic realities of the offerings and Bittrex’s conduct.” 

US Bittrex customers have until April 24 to facilitate fiat withdrawals via wire transfer and until April 27 to withdraw via ACH. Trading closed on the platform last week on April 14. 

If users miss the above deadlines to pull funds off the platform, remaining assets “may be unavailable for an extended period,” Bittrex said.


Don’t miss the next big story – join our free daily newsletter.

Tags

Upcoming Events

Hilton Metropole | 225 Edgware Rd, London

Mon - Wed, March 18 - 20, 2024

Crypto’s premier institutional conference returns to London in March 2024. The DAS: London Experience: Attend expert-led panel discussions and fireside chats Hear the latest developments regarding the crypto and digital asset regulatory environment directly from policymakers and experts.

Salt Lake City, UT

WED - FRI, OCTOBER 9 - 11, 2024

Pack your bags, anon — we’re heading west! Join us in the beautiful Salt Lake City for the third installment of Permissionless. Come for the alpha, stay for the fresh air. Permissionless III promises unforgettable panels, killer networking opportunities, and mountains […]

recent research

Research report - cover graphics (1).jpg

Research

In this report, we dive into crypto private market data to gather insights on where the future of the industry is headed. Despite a notable downturn in private raises, capital continues to infuse promising projects that aim to transform payments, banking, consumer experiences, community, and more, with 2023 being the fourth-largest year for crypto venture capital.

article-image

Revolut said that the standalone crypto exchange is currently “invite only”

article-image

The stock price jump comes after Coinbase reported ending its seven-quarter run of net losses during the fourth quarter

article-image

BUZZ holds shares of Coinbase, Robinhood and MicroStrategy

article-image

Opinion: Even though I didn’t pay for my “Diamond Hands” burger with BTC, don’t let that fool you into thinking that crypto’s development is futile

article-image

The results mark “a major positive inflection point,” one analyst says, as the exchange carries net income momentum into a crypto rally

article-image

While the slate of 10 US spot bitcoin funds have tallied $4.6 billion of net inflows thus far, half of the field is lagging the leaders