German Regulator Orders Crypto Exchange to Halt Brokerage Business

NEWS
Sujha Sundararajan
Jan 30, 2018 at 11:00 UTC  |  Updated  Jan 30, 2018 at 11:05 UTC

German Financial Supervisory Authority (BaFin) has ordered Crypto.exchange GmbH, a Berlin-based exchange, to immediately stop acting as a financial broker.

The order was issued after the exchange advertised on its website, btc-now.de, that it would sell customer's bitcoins for euros and sell them on a stock exchange, says BaFin in a statement. The firm claimed the purchase price would be transferred to the investors within 30 minutes, it adds.

According to BaFin, the financial commission business operated by Crypto.exchange GmbH is not authorized by the regulator. The financial watchdog took the decision after users claimed that they did not receive any money for cryptocurrency that was transferred to the firm, Bloomberg states.

"The BaFin order is immediately enforceable by law, but not yet final," said the release. At press time, the btc-now.de website was not operational.

Back in April, BaFin moved to shut down a payment processor tied to to the OneCoin cryptocurrency scheme, a digital currency service that has faced widespread allegations of fraud, and has been fined 2.6 million euros in Italy.

Weeks later, BaFin issued new cease-and-desist orders to two holding companies connected to OneCoin, ordering the companies to "dismantle their internet based OneCoins trading system."

Editor's Note: Some of the statements in this report have been translated from German. 

Euro image via Shutterstock

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