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Top Headlines for 28 September, 2022

Crypto-lender Nexo Faces Charges From Eight U.S States

Nexo has been charged by eight U.S. state regulators for allegedly operating an unregistered Earn Interest Product. The states of California, New York, Kentucky, Maryland, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Washington and Vermont have filed for administrative action against the cryptocurrency lending firm. They alleged that its products qualify as securities and should be registered with the relevant agency.

“Nexo violated the law and investors’ trust by falsely claiming it is a licensed and registered platform,” Letitia James, the New York Attorney General noted. She detailed that the state had sued the crypto lending firm and will seek “disgorgement of any revenues derived from Nexo’s unlawful conduct.”

SEC Fines Tether’s Former Auditor $1M For Malpractice

Friedman LLP, the New York-based accounting firm that facilitated auditing services for Tether, has been charged with “serious violation of the federal securities laws” and numerous counts of “improper professional conduct” by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. The auditor was found guilty of not conducting its audits in accordance with the standards of the Public Company Accounting Oversight Board.

As per the settlement agreement, Friedman LLP will pay a $1 million civil penalty and $564,138 in disgorgement and prejudgment interest. The order issued by the SEC takes note of the company’s unprofessional accounting practices between 2015 and 2020, including its complacency to “respond to fraud risk” and the inability to “exercise due professional care and professional skepticism.” Although the SEC’s order did not mention Tether, it is known that the stablecoin issuer employed Friedman LLP from May 2017 to January 2018.

Christie’s Launches Curated NFT Marketplace

Christie’s is launching an Ethereum-based NFT marketplace, becoming the first global auction house to host completely on-chain sales. Dubbed as Christie’s 3.0, the platform will make its debut with an inaugural sale of nine exclusive NFTs by Diana Sinclair, from her collection, “Phases.”

Christie’s has partnered with blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis, NFT startup Manifold and metaverse developer Spatial to create this platform. The complete auction process, including pre-and-post sale transactions will take place on the Ethereum blockchain. The auction house will provide built-in anti-money laundering, compliance and taxation tools to its platform.