Crypto firm Blockvest slapped with $700K penalty over its unregistered ICO

SEC Order unregistered ICO

Blockvest LLC received a final judgment from a U.S. court after a long legal fight with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) over its 2018 unregistered initial coin offering (ICO).

In a court document filed this week, the SEC sought a permanent injunction, disgorgement of funds received from Blockvest’s illegal conduct, and civil penalties.

The court case is aimed at both Blockvest and the firm’s founder, Reginald Buddy Ringgold III, also known as Rasool Abdul Rahim El.

According to the order, Blockvest and Ringgold are required to pay a civil penalty of $332,370.99 along with a disgorgement of ill-gotten gains of $363,726.91 —  including prejudgment interest. The penalties come out to a cost of $696,097.90.

In 2018, the SEC filed a case against Blockvest alleging the sales of unregistered securities during its ICO.

The case was somehow put to a halt when the SEC’s request for an asset freeze was initially denied. However, a ruling to reconsider was filed later on which allowed the injunction.

“Blockvest, which purports to be the “first [U.S.] licensed and regulated tokenized cryptocurrency exchange and index fund”, claims that it has already raised more than $2.5 million in pre-ICO sales of its BL V digital tokens (“BLVs”), and that it will raise $100 million during its ICO, purportedly to fund Blockvest’s digital asset-related financial products and services,” the original complaint stated.

In its bid to seek a permanent injunction, the SEC said Blockvest and Ringgold knew that their actions were wrong but pushed with the ICO, covering up what they could during legal proceedings.