Cryptocurrency derivatives exchange platform BitMEX has agreed to pay $100 million to the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) due to alleged illegal operations and anti-money laundering violations. BitMEX announced the news on their website last Tuesday, August 10.
Last October 2020, BitMEX was accused of illegally running a cryptocurrency trading platform and breaking anti-money laundering regulations.
According to the complaint filed by CFTC, BitMEX was operating in the US for the past six years without the approval of regulators and sold crypto derivatives to US users. On the other hand, FinCEN accused BitMEX of failing to follow proper anti-money laundering procedures.
‘Today marks an important day in our company’s history, and we are very glad to put this behind us. As crypto matures and enters a new era, we too have evolved into the largest crypto derivatives platform with a fully verified user base. Comprehensive user verification, robust compliance, and anti-money laundering capabilities are not only hallmarks of our business – they are drivers of our long-term success,’ BitMex CEO Alexander Höptner stated in the announcement.
He also added, ‘We take our responsibilities extremely seriously, and will continue to actively engage with regulators around the world to ensure that we play a positive role in helping to shape the future of this extraordinary asset class’.
The investigation on the three co-founders of BitMEX is still ongoing. According to CFTC, the exchange platform has discontinued all marketing and trading activities in the US as of June 30, 2021.
Moreover, the five companies that were accused of running BitMEX agreed to pay an initial $80 million to settle the charges and an additional $20 million for delayed further investigations. The companies included are HDR Global Trading Ltd., 100x Holding Limited, ABS Global Trading Ltd., Shine Effort Inc Limited, and HDR Global Services (Bermuda) Ltd.
In regards to the settlement that BitMEX and the regulators reached, Höptner expressed in the BitMEX announcement that he is ‘very glad to put this behind’ and pledges to ‘actively engage with regulators around the world…to shape the future of this extraordinary asset class’.
‘Putting this legal matter with the CFTC and FinCEN behind us will only accelerate our evolution, and puts us firmly on the right path,’ Höptner added.
Höptner also expressed that ‘comprehensive user verification, robust compliance, and anti-money laundering capabilities’ are not only hallmarks of their company, but rather the ‘drivers’ of their long-term success.
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