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U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) New Evidence of Illicit Trade Case securities by the Telegram messenger during the ICO of Gram tokens.
SEC statement filed with district courtNew York, it is indicated that Telegram employees sold coins under the guise of securities. As evidence, the agency cites the correspondence of the messenger workers with investors:
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- On March 6, 2019, Shyam Parekh wrote an email to an ICO Gram participant, in which he said that “the fund has the right to receive securities” and “securities cannot be pledged”;
- Parech drew an analogy with traditional financialby the market, stating that “a client who takes part in an earlier round of attracting investments can purchase an asset at a discount, but in this case there are more stringent restrictions on access to shares” (it will take longer to wait for coins to be received), according to officials, the specialist Telegram compared the stoning protocol in the TON blockchain to stock lending;
- Advisor to Blackmoon Financial Grouptold the employee of the messenger Perekopsky that “the process of stabilizing the value of an asset is a common practice in the market of public initial offer (IPO) of shares, which is actively used in the cryptocurrency market during the trading of digital assets on exchanges."
In an official post published in Telegram Blog, states that Gram tokens are notinvestment product, so traders should not rely on profit from trading or storing coins. Representatives of the messenger argue that Gram does not provide the right to own Telegram shares, does not bring dividends and does not provide an opportunity to participate in the process of managing the enterprise. Thus, the messenger management does not admit guilt in violation of the law governing the sale of securities, as tokens are not included in this category of financial instruments.