Report: Tezos Founders Ask Foundation to Help Pay Legal Bills in ICO Suits

The Tezos project founders reportedly asked their foundation to pay for their legal bills after being sued multiple times. The foundation said no.

AccessTimeIconDec 1, 2017 at 8:30 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 7:13 a.m. UTC
10 Years of Decentralizing the Future
May 29-31, 2024 - Austin, TexasThe biggest and most established global event for everything crypto, blockchain and Web3.Register Now

The husband-and-wife founders of Tezos are reportedly turning to the controversial blockchain project's nonprofit foundation to help pay the couple's legal bills as they fight a growing number of lawsuits.

As previously reported, the lawsuits stem from Tezos' $232 million initial coin offering (ICO), which was completed earlier this year. Yet months after the token sale was finished, details of an internal power struggle between founders Kathleen and Arthur Breitman, and the head of the Switzerland-based Tezos Foundation, Johann Gevers, were made public.

And while the Breitmans initially sought to assuage fears over the future of the project, allegations of fraud and misrepresentation have been advanced in what are now three ongoing proposed class-action lawsuits. As the National Law Review reported earlier this week, the latest complaint was filed on Nov. 26 in California.

Those growing legal problems have led the Breitmans to seek out financial support from the Tezos Foundation, according to Reuters.

Citing anonymous sources, the news service reports that Breitmans want help in covering the expenses related to the lawsuits. Gevers, the Swiss-based foundation's head, told the wire service he could not comment on the report.

The Breitmans have been being accused of violating federal securities laws and defrauding their ICO's contributors, since they have yet to launch their proposed smart contracts network, and allegedly selling unregistered securities, in the form of their unreleased native "tezzies" token, to contributors.

Brian Klein, an attorney for the Breitmans, did not immediately respond to an emailed request for comment.

Gavel image via Shutterstock


Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

CoinDesk is an award-winning media outlet that covers the cryptocurrency industry. Its journalists abide by a strict set of editorial policies. In November 2023, CoinDesk was acquired by the Bullish group, owner of Bullish, a regulated, digital assets exchange. The Bullish group is majority-owned by; both companies have interests in a variety of blockchain and digital asset businesses and significant holdings of digital assets, including bitcoin. CoinDesk operates as an independent subsidiary with an editorial committee to protect journalistic independence. CoinDesk employees, including journalists, may receive options in the Bullish group as part of their compensation.

Learn more about Consensus 2024, CoinDesk's longest-running and most influential event that brings together all sides of crypto, blockchain and Web3. Head to to register and buy your pass now.