The United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) revealed they’ve settled previously undisclosed charges against movie actor, Steven Seagal.
Steven Seagal, a 67-year-old martial arts expert who resides in Moscow, Russia allegedly failed to disclose payments he received for promoting investment in Bitcoiin2Gen’s (B2G) initial coin offering (ICO).
Seagal’s promotion reportedly include posts on his public social media accounts. He encouraged the public not to “miss out” on Bitcoiin2Gen’s ICO. He also released a post titled “Zen Master Steven Seagal Has Become the Brand Ambassador of Bitcoiin2Gen.”
Furthermore, a Bitcoiin2Gen press release also included a quotation from Seagal stating that he endorsed the ICO wholeheartedly.
The SEC charges
The SEC claims that Seagal failed to disclose a promised $250,000 in cash. As well as, $750,000 worth of B2G tokens in exchange for his promotions.
Additionally, these promotions came six months after the SEC’s 2017 DAO Report that warned about coins sold in ICOs being securities. Besides, the SEC’s anti-touting provisions of the federal securities laws, says that any celebrity or another individual who promotes a virtual token or coin that’s a security must disclose the nature. As well as, the scope and amount of compensation received in exchange for the promotion.
Kristina Littman, Chief of the SEC Enforcement Division’s Cyber Unit said: “These investors were entitled to know about payments Seagal received or got promised to endorse this investment so they could decide whether he may be biased.”
“Celebrities are not allowed to use their social media influence to tout securities without appropriately disclosing their compensation,” he added.
The SEC’s order claims that Seagal violated the anti-touting provisions of the federal securities laws.
Seagal agreed to pay $157,000 in disgorgement, which represents his actual promotional payments. As well as, prejudgment interest, and a $157,000 penalty. Although, he didn’t admit to or deny the SEC’s findings.
In addition, Seagal consented not to promote any securities, digital or otherwise, for three years.
To remind, the SEC recently slapped charges against Enigma recently for conducting an unregistered offering of securities in the form of an initial coin offering (ICO).