Below is a summary of some of the significant legal and regulatory actions that occurred over the past week. This alert is not intended to be a comprehensive list of all such developments, but rather a selection of publicly-reported news that may be of particular interest.
CFTC Files Civil Action Over Alleged Fraudulent Scheme
On September 21st, the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”) announced the filing of claims against Nicholas Gelfman and Gelfman Blueprint, Inc. (the “Defendants”) for fraud, misappropriation, and issuing false account statements in connection with solicited investments in Bitcoin. According to the allegations asserted by the CFTC, the Defendants operated a Ponzi scheme, misappropriated funds from investors, and took steps to conceal losses (including by staging a “hack” on its computer systems designed to conceal what were actually trading losses and depletion of funds due to misappropriation).
Notably, this enforcement action (1) articulates the CFTC’s position that Bitcoin and other virtual currencies are encompassed in the definition of a “commodity,” under
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