Judge Rejects Multimillion Dollar Asset Plea in Crypto Fraud Case

Vancouver news daily The Province reported the ruling on Aug. 19. According to the report, the defendants, Lisa Angela Cheng and Kevin Patrick Hobbs, stand accused of committing fraud, tax evasion and money laundering.

A Supreme Court judge in British Columbia (BC), Canada, has denied a motion to set aside an asset freeze, which was requested by the defendants in a multimillion dollar cryptocurrency fraud case.

The defendants had filed to set aside an interim preservation order that was issued by the British Columbia Civil Forfeiture Office in order to prevent case-related assets from being sold or accumulating debt.

Alleged $22.5 million fraud via FUEL tokens

The Forfeiture Office alleges that the defendants’ companies, Vanbex Group Inc. and Etherparty SmartContracts Inc., launched and ran an investment offering with a token called FUEL, but only ever intended to pocket the proceeds for themselves.

Additionally, the Forfeiture Office alleged that the defendants received $22.5 million in crypto fraud, and were attempting to liquidate their assets in response to an investigation by the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

The BC Civil Forfeiture Office previously seized the defendants’ Coal Harbour luxury townhouse, their two Range Rover SUVs and funds in Bank of Montreal accounts alleged to be the proceeds of the crime.

The townhouse was recently listed for sale at $5.9 million and the SUVs are worth as much as $67,500 each, per the report. BC Supreme Court judge Elliot M. Myer ruled:

“Looking at the matter overall, I do not think the defendants have demonstrated that the seizure is clearly not within the interests of justice.”

U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission wins asset freeze

As previously reported by Cointelegraph, the United States Securities and Exchange Commission recently won an asset freeze requested from a U.S. District Court. The court subsequently ordered a temporary freeze of $8 million, which were raised by the defendants Reginald Middleton and his companies Veritaseum, Inc. and Veritaseum, LLC. The defendants stand accused of violating U.S. federal securities laws and performing manipulative trading via activities involving their Ether (ETH)-backed VERI token.

Justin Sun Explains the Rationale Behind His $1 Million Greta Thunberg Donation

On Dec. 18 Cointelegraph reported that Tron (TRX) founder Justin Sun publicly pledged to donate $1 million to Swedish activist Great Thunberg to raise global awareness of the climate crisis.

Following the COP25 UN Climate Conference in Madrid, Sun tweeted:

Although Sun has pledged a donation of $1 million to Greta Thunberg’s campaign, it was left unclear as to how cryptocurrency would help reduce carbon footprints through the creation of decentralized settlements.

Regarding this, Sun told Cointelegraph that decentralized settlements and decentralized finance platforms are run by computers on cloud computing systems. In turn, this eliminates the need for paper documentation.

“Decentralized settlement and decentralized finance are completely run by computers on cloud computing systems, thus eliminating the need for ledger documentation and management records kept on paper.”

Additionally, cloud computing systems do not rely on physical transportation infrastructure, as everything is digital. Systems like these could make it possible for people to travel less, easing the travel sector’s burden on the environment – it accounts for 8 percent of global carbon emissions.

“These types of records require postal mailing which is done through transportation. The whole Know Your Customer process also requires face-to-face interaction, which sometimes makes it necessary for people to travel. All of this will not be compulsory when decentralized finance is utilized.”

Sun also pointed out that using a Proof-of-Stake (PoS) system could reduce energy consumption seen in traditional Proof-of-Work (PoW) mining methods used by Bitcoin. To put this into perspective, a study recently showed that Bitcoin mining emits over 22 megatons of carbon dioxide annually, comparable to the total emissions of cities such as Las Vegas and Vienna.

“By adopting a PoS system, it drastically reduces the massive energy consumption used in traditional PoW mining method used by Bitcoin.”

Lastly, Sun mentioned that decentralized financial systems are beneficial in that they are readily available around the world.

“Decentralized finance systems are available to everyone in the world! Bank the unbanked. Today, the traditional finance system is limited, expensive and not cost effective. Enormous resources and steps are required just to open an account. Imagine having to serve a heavily populated country and all the wastage that ensues. I truly believe blockchain must be in our future if we want to eliminate wastage and make a difference.”

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