The British Columbia Securities Commission has taken control of a cryptocurrency exchange which allegedly owes customers over $12 million. Einstein Exchange had planned to shut down amid complaints, lawsuits, and money laundering investigations. The Canadian regulator has also taken action against another crypto exchange after receiving multiple complaints.
The British Columbia Securities Commission (BCSC) has taken control of a Vancouver-based cryptocurrency exchange. The regulator announced Monday that the Supreme Court of British Columbia has granted its application for “an order appointing an interim receiver to preserve and protect any assets of Einstein Exchange.” Grant Thornton Ltd., the court-appointed interim receiver, entered and secured the premises of Einstein Exchange on Nov. 1, the commission revealed.
The documents filed in court detail that the BCSC had received numerous complaints about customers being unable to access their assets on the exchange. BCSC Executive Director Peter Brady told CBC News, “We had sent some requests for information to the exchange twice and we didn’t get an answer,” adding that on Oct. 31:
We were then talking to the company’s counsel and learned that the exchange intended to shut down within 30 to 60 days due to a lack of profit and subsequently that legal counsel stepped down, so that raised concerns for us.
Brady noted that the commission has also notified federal law enforcement regarding concerns about possible money laundering at the exchange. The commission started investigating the exchange in May.
The BCSC is the independent provincial government agency responsible for regulating capital markets in British Columbia. The regulator emphasized that it has not authorized any company to operate as a cryptocurrency exchange.