Authorities explained that they have ordered Telegram to return more than $ 1.2 billion to its investors and pay a fine of $ 18.5 million
A few months ago Telegram had made the decision to leave behind its Gram cryptocurrency platform, but the issue is not settled as the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has imposed a million dollar fine on them. Authorities explained that to resolve charges of violating federal securities laws, they have ordered Telegram to return more than $ 1.2 billion to its investors and pay a fine of $ 18.5 million.
As The Next Web explains, in August last year, Telegram promised that its Gram coin, which would operate with a decentralized Bitcoin-like structure, would be ready by October 31, 2019. Because the initiative was largely born out of a $ 1.7 billion investment round in 2018, Telegram said that if it had not delivered Grams in late October, it would return the investors’ money.
A few months later, in October, the SEC decided to intervene by obtaining a temporary restraining order against the company. The agency said Telegram did not register the offer at its office, and since it sees Grams as securities, it accused the technology company of violating the Securities Act of 1933. Then, in March, the United States District Court in New York issued a preliminary court order to prohibit the delivery of Grams. And now the SEC has issued its final judgment.
New and innovative companies can participate in our capital markets, but they cannot do so in violation of the registration requirements of federal securities laws, said Kristina Littman, head of the SEC’s enforcement division’s cyber unit. The SEC decided that Telegram has to return the funds to investors and notify future digital offerings.
Telegram, meanwhile, accepted the penalty without admitting or denying any wrongdoing. It is not yet clear if Telegram will insist on its Gram initiative in the future. If it does, it will undoubtedly do so under the watchful eye of the SEC, as has happened in other cases, for example with Libra, the Facebook currency, which is has faced intense scrutiny from officials, causing continued delays in its launch.
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