Actor Steven Seagal must pay ICO promotion fines: US judge

One of the world’s popular action movie actors must pay the full penalty imposed for promoting a digital currency ICO, a U.S. federal judge has ruled. Steven Seagal got into trouble for touting Bitcoiin2Gen’s ICO and even though he agreed to pay over $300,000 in fines, he has since relocated to Russia and stopped the payment.

The veteran actor caught regulators’ ire when he started touting Bitcoiin 2nd Generation (Bitcoiin2Gen) as an unmissable investment opportunity, and even went as far as issuing a press release to announce that he was B2G’s brand ambassador. What he failed to mention was that he was receiving $250,000 in cash and triple that amount in B2G tokens.

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) would, later on, crack the whip and charge him for this. The case, just like many others the securities regulator pursues, eventually ended up in a settlement. Seagal agreed to pay $157,000 in disgorgement and a similar amount in penalties.

According to a Bloomberg report, Seagal paid $75,000 to the SEC initially and pledged to pay the rest promptly. However, this was the only payment he would end up making.

The 69-year-old actor has since relocated to Russia where President Vladimir Putin had issued a decree granting him citizenship a few years prior.

Now, U.S. District Judge William Kuntz has signed an order allowing the SEC to pursue the actor and collect the remaining fines and penalties, with interest. SEC lawyer Maureen King told the court that the watchdog has been trying to reach out to the actor with no success.

Judge Kuntz has allowed the SEC to serve the papers to Seagal’s business manager after the actor, and his lawyers, failed to turn up to court on Friday as directed.

Bitcoiin2Gen was a Ponzi scheme that posed as a staking platform, with B2G token holders being promised considerable profits. The SEC has also cracked down on the three founders of the Ponzi scheme and has filed charges seeking disgorgement of ill-gotten gains and payment of prejudgment interest.

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