Home Altcoins News SEC Sues Kraken: Unregistered Exchange Operations and Fund Mishandling Scandal

SEC Sues Kraken: Unregistered Exchange Operations and Fund Mishandling Scandal

SEC lawsuit against Kraken

In a seismic shake-up within the cryptocurrency realm, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has thrust the major exchange, Kraken, into the legal spotlight. The SEC dropped a bombshell announcement on November 20, revealing charges against Kraken for a litany of alleged offenses that span unauthorized exchange operations, commingling of funds, and various regulatory infractions.

The accusations against Kraken are nothing short of damning. The regulatory body asserts that the exchange operated as an unregistered securities exchange, broker, dealer, and clearing agency, contravening federal laws mandating registration with the SEC. The alleged violations, which purportedly span from 2018 until the present, have purportedly generated hundreds of millions in revenue for Kraken, all while sidestepping essential compliance measures and customer protections mandated by regulatory oversight.

Central to the SEC’s case is the claim that Kraken’s failure to register denied customers crucial safeguards, including regulatory inspections, measures against conflicts of interest, and adherence to stringent recordkeeping requirements. Moreover, the SEC alleges that Kraken blundered by intermingling customer and corporate funds, unsettlingly tapping into accounts housing user funds to cover operational expenses. An audit conducted on Kraken reportedly flagged these practices as a “significant risk of loss” for users, exacerbating the severity of the allegations.

Notably, the SEC’s complaint, sprawling across a hefty 90 pages, casts a wide net over Kraken’s exchange and trading operations. The parallels drawn between this complaint and those previously leveled against industry heavyweights Coinbase and Binance in June lend weight to the gravity of this legal onslaught on the crypto sphere.

The SEC isn’t mincing words in its pursuit of justice. Seeking fines, injunctions, and curbs on activities through its complaint, the regulatory body’s actions signify a stark warning to the broader cryptocurrency landscape about the non-negotiable importance of regulatory compliance and accountability.

Despite the uproar, neither Kraken nor its co-founder Jesse Powell have issued any statements addressing the allegations, leaving the industry on tenterhooks regarding the exchange’s next move in this high-stakes legal tussle.

This isn’t the first skirmish Kraken has weathered in the regulatory storm. Earlier this year, the SEC pressed charges against Kraken concerning its cryptocurrency staking service, ultimately culminating in a $30 million settlement and an agreement to halt the service for U.S. customers.

Additionally, beyond the SEC fracas, Kraken found itself embroiled in a contentious battle with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). The conclusion of this standoff saw Kraken concede some customer information demanded by the IRS, signifying a notable but partial capitulation in the face of governmental pressure.

Kraken’s day-to-day operations have been a focal point of attention, with the company handling staggering trading volumes. Recent data from Coingecko illustrates the exchange handling a whopping $808 million in transactions on November 20 alone, underscoring its prominence in the ever-evolving cryptocurrency market.

This isn’t the first time Kraken has faced legal action. Earlier this year, the SEC charged Kraken over its cryptocurrency staking service. Kraken settled for $30 million and agreed to halt this service for U.S. customers.

As the legal drama unfolds, the implications for Kraken, its users, and the wider cryptocurrency ecosystem remain uncertain. The clash between regulatory oversight and the freewheeling ethos of the crypto world hangs in the balance, poised to reshape the industry’s landscape in unforeseen ways.

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Steven Anderson

Steven is an explorer by heart – both in the physical and the digital realm. A traveler, Steven continues to visit new places throughout the year in the physical world, while in the digital realm has been instrumental in a number of Kickstarter projects. Technology attracts Steven and through his business acumen has gained financial profits as well as fame in his business niche. Send a tip to: 0x200294f120Cd883DE8f565a5D0C9a1EE4FB1b4E9

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