After two years of legal battles, it has finally been judged that Blockvest and its founder will have to pay $700,000 in multiple compensations.
According to court documents from last Thursday, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) requested the court impose a “permanent injunction, disgorgement of funds received from Defendants’ illegal conduct, and civil penalties” to Blockvest and its founder Reginald Buddy Ringgold III, also known as Rasool Abdul Rahim El.
The SEC further claimed that the defendants knew their actions were illegal, but still continued in their endeavor. While the SEC had not given its consent to the 2018 ICO, the firm claimed it was the first “licensed and regulated tokenized cryptocurrency exchange and index fund”. Blockvest had also falsely claimed connections to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission and the National Futures Association, and went was far as to invent a new regulatory body. The court documents read:
“Created a fictitious regulatory agency, the Blockchain Exchange Commission (‘BEC’), creating its own fake government seal, logo, and mission statement that are nearly identical to the SEC’s seal, logo, mission statement as well as using the same address as the SEC’s headquarters.”
The U.S. Southern District Court of California sided with the SEC, and ordered the defendants to refund the 2018 ICO participants, and pay a civil penalty of $332,370, along with a disgorgement of ill-gotten gains of $363,726. Blockvest and Ringgold III must also abide by a number of restraints and conditions put forward by the court.