Home Cryptocurrency Finra Wades Into Cryptocurrency Enforcement

Finra Wades Into Cryptocurrency Enforcement

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The Monetary Trade Regulatory Authority alleges that the dealer ‘tried to lure public funding in his nugatory public firm.’


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brendan mcdermid/Reuters

The Monetary Trade Regulatory Authority has issued its first disciplinary motion involving cryptocurrencies.

Finra, a self-regulatory group, on Tuesday filed a criticism in opposition to Timothy Tilton Ayre, saying he dedicated securities fraud and unlawfully distributed HempCoin, an unregistered, cannabis-focused cryptocurrency safety.

The criticism comes after scrutiny from regulators, including the Securities and Exchange Commission, along with nicely publicized scams and a broad selloff within the cryptocurrency market.

Finra alleges within the criticism that between January 2013 and October 2016, Mr. Ayre, of Agawam, Mass., “tried to lure public funding in his nugatory public firm,” Rocky Mountain Ayre Inc.

Mr. Ayre couldn’t instantly be reached for remark.

The dealer allegedly issued and bought HempCoin, which he publicized as “the primary minable coin backed by marketable securities,” and allegedly made fraudulent statements about Rocky Mountain Ayre’s enterprise and funds, in keeping with the criticism. The corporate was quoted on the Pink Market of

OTC Markets Group

and was traded over-the-counter.

Mr. Ayre allegedly purchased the rights to HempCoin and repackaged it in June 2015 as a safety backed by inventory in Rocky Mountain Ayre, in keeping with the criticism. The dealer allegedly marketed HempCoin as equal to zero.10 shares of the publicly traded firm, Finra stated.

By way of late 2017, buyers mined greater than 81 million HempCoins and acquired and bought the securities on two cryptocurrency exchanges, the criticism stated. Mr. Ayre didn’t register HempCoin, Finra stated.

Below Finra guidelines, a agency or particular person named in a criticism can file a response and request a listening to earlier than a Finra disciplinary panel. Doable actions embrace a superb, censure, suspension or bar from the securities business, disgorgement of good points related to the violations and fee of restitution.

Write to Aisha Al-Muslim at aisha.al-muslim@wsj.com

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