Thursday, July 18, 2024

The founder of crypto exchange Digitex, Adam Todd, has been ordered by a federal court to pay almost $16 million to resolve accusations that he ran an illegal platform and sought to manipulate its native token, DGTX, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) said in a Wednesday statement.

In concluding what had been the CFTC’s first case that accused a decentralized-finance (DeFi) platform for failing to register as an exchange, a judge in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Florida found Todd violated several commodities laws in running the Florida-based Digitex Futures exchange, and the judge ordered he be banned from trading. Todd faces a $12 million fine and about $4 million in disgorgement, though it’s unclear whether Todd or the company would have the resources to pay back customers.

“This order resolves yet another action against an individual and digital asset exchange illegally offering futures contracts to U.S. customers,” said Ian McGinley, the CFTC’s enforcement director, in a statement. He noted the court also found that Todd had “attempted to manipulate Digitex’s native utility token, DGTX, by allegedly ‘pumping’ the token’s price through the use of a computerized bot.”

Todd has still been active as a developer of Digitex Games, which utilizes the DGTX token, according to its website. He didn’t immediately respond to a request for comment at that site.

Edited by Nick Baker.

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