Following the increased regulatory oversight over the crypto industry, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has filed an emergency motion for a temporary restraining order against Binance Holdings Limited, BAM Trading Services, BAM Management US Holdings, and Changpeng Zhao.
The SEC seeks to freeze the assets of BAM Management and BAM Trading, direct defendants to repatriate assets held for the benefit of BAM customers, and prohibit the destruction of records by defendants, among other forms of relief. According to the court filing, the SEC alleges that the defendants have engaged in acts, practices, and courses of business that constitute violations of securities laws.
Binance.US In Hot Water
The SEC argues that an order freezing BAM’s assets is necessary to prevent the dissipation or transfer of those assets from the jurisdiction of the court and to “protect” the court’s ability to award relief in the form of disgorgement, prejudgment interest, and civil penalties.
The SEC also seeks an order requiring defendants to repatriate assets held for the benefit of customers of BAM and the Binance.US Platform, as well as an order prohibiting defendants from destroying, altering, or concealing records of any kind.
If granted, the restraining order would freeze assets and prevent the world’s largest crypto exchange from disposing of them until a hearing on the matter could take place, as part of a broader crackdown on cryptocurrency companies that allegedly fail to comply with securities laws.SEC’s Escalating Approach To Regulation Raises Questions
Cryptocurrency analyst Adam Cochran recently commented on the SEC’s motion against Binance and its affiliates, highlighting a key aspect of the motion that he believes is significant.
In a tweet, Cochran noted that the SEC’s motion seeks to repatriate assets held by Binance.US, which could include deposits made by customers as well as any assets held by Binance.US on behalf of the main Binance exchange.
Cochran argues that this represents a significant escalation in the SEC’s approach to regulating the cryptocurrency industry, as it seeks to go after assets held by exchanges rather than just the exchanges themselves.
This could have major implications for the industry, as it would mean that regulators could potentially freeze assets held by exchanges even if the exchanges themselves are not found to have violated securities laws.
The outcome of the SEC’s motion against Binance is likely to have significant implications for the cryptocurrency industry, as it could set a precedent for how regulators around the world treat cryptocurrency exchanges and trading platforms.
If the SEC is successful in freezing assets held by Binance.US, it could have a chilling effect on the industry, making it more difficult for exchanges to operate and for investors to trade digital assets.
Following the SEC’s motion neither Binance nor CZ have responded to this latest development.
Featured image from Unsplash, chart from TradingView.com