Business 27 September 2018

Dan Taylor

US securities regulator chases enforcement against PlexCoin promoters

The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has petitioned a court in New York for enforcement action against two individuals over their involvement in the “fast-moving” PlexCoin ICO investment scam.

Following investigations into the affair, the SEC has resorted to the courts, in pursuit of a motion “to compel” and “for discovery sanctions” against Sabrina Paradis-Royer and Dominic Lacroix over the promotion of PlexCoin, Finance Feeds reported.

Canadian courts ordered PlexCoin to suspend its ICO offering, but authorities said the organizers ignored the ruling and raised some $15 million for the project.

The SEC previously shut down the project, citing concerns over potential fraud. Now, they are looking to apply further pressure, following a lack of cooperation from the scheme’s promoters, including ignoring previous court orders.

According to the court filing, the securities regulator is seeking a default judgement on the grounds of “prejudice…to [Plexcoin’s] investor victims.” In particular, the SEC “seeks leave, pursuant to Rule 3(A) of this Court’s Individual Motion Practices and Rules, to file a motion to compel and a motion for discovery sanctions against Dominic Lacroix and Sabrina Paradis-Royer (collectively “Defendants”) under Rule 37(a) and Rule 37(b) of the Federal Rules of Civil Procedure.”

“Defendants’ dereliction coupled with the prejudice to the Commission and to Defendants’ investor victims warrants the serious sanction of a default judgment against them under Rule 37(b)(2)(A)(vi),” the filing read.

Lacroix and Paradis-Royer were sued by the SEC back in December, on grounds of securities fraud. At the time, their assets were frozen under an emergency order. Their assets were refrozen in June after it was alleged the pair had been using hidden accounts.

According to the SEC at the time, “Lacroix had been using secret accounts, including an account in his brother’s name … to improperly dissipate for personal use digital assets obtained from investors during the PlexCoin Initial Coin Offering.”

With the latest filing, the SEC has concluded the pair have no intention of cooperation, petitioning the court to grant the enforcement action and sanctions it demands. Whether this allows any further assets to be recovered remains to be seen.

Note: Tokens on the Bitcoin Core (SegWit) chain are referenced as BTC coins; tokens on the Bitcoin Cash ABC chain are referenced as BCH, BCH-ABC or BAB coins.

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