SEC wants Steven Seagal to pay full penalty for unlawful ICO touting
It appears that well-known Hollywood actor and producer Steven Seagal has failed to pay the full penalty imposed on him for unlawful initial coin offering (ICO) touting. This becomes clear from a lawsuit filed by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) at the New York Eastern District Court.
The SEC estimates that Seagal owes nearly a half of the fine he had agreed to pay.
Let’s recall that, in February 2020, the SEC announced settled charges against Steven Seagal for failing to disclose payments he received for promoting an investment in an initial coin offering (ICO) conducted by Bitcoiin2Gen (B2G).
The SEC’s order found that Seagal failed to disclose he was promised $250,000 in cash and $750,000 worth of B2G tokens in exchange for his promotions, which included posts on his public social media accounts encouraging the public not to “miss out” on Bitcoiin2Gen’s ICO and a press release titled “Zen Master Steven Seagal Has Become the Brand Ambassador of Bitcoiin2Gen.”
A Bitcoiin2Gen press release also included a quotation from Seagal stating that he endorsed the ICO “wholeheartedly.” These promotions came six months after the SEC’s 2017 DAO Report warning that coins sold in ICOs may be securities. The SEC has also advised that, in accordance with the anti-touting provisions of the federal securities laws, any celebrity or other individual who promotes a virtual token or coin that is a security must disclose the nature, scope, and amount of compensation received in exchange for the promotion.
Without admitting or denying the SEC’s findings, Seagal agreed to pay $157,000 in disgorgement, which represents his actual promotional payments, plus prejudgment interest, and a $157,000 penalty. In addition, Seagal agreed not to promote any securities, digital or otherwise, for three years.
According to documents, filed by the SEC at the Court earlier this week, Seagal has not paid the full penalty.
The SEC explains that the installment plan required period payments over 330 days. Seagal has paid only $75,000 – the remainder is now delinquent and accruing interest daily.
The regulator seeks a judgment so that it may enforce its earlier order against Seagal.