Lindsay Lohan, Jake Paul, Ne-Yo and More Stars Charged by SEC Over Cryptocurrency Violations
Lindsay Lohan, Jake Paul and several other celebs are in hot water after allegedly promoting cryptocurrency endeavors without revealing they'd been paid to do so.
The Securities and Exchange Commission announced on Wednesday that they have filed fraud charges, as well as unregistered securities charges, against crypto founder Justin Sun -- who is also a Grenadian diplomat.
The SEC also announced charges related to various violations against eight celebrity influencers, who are accused of collaborating with Sun by promoting his Tronix and BitTorrent crypto assets -- specifically the TRX and BTT crypto coins -- in a way that led investors to believe they were being actively traded and had the potential for financial success.
The SEC alleges that Sun was "orchestrating a promotional campaign in which he and his celebrity promoters hid the fact that the celebrities were paid for their tweet."
Lohan and Paul were among those accused of being a part of the fraudulent efforts, as well as music artists Austin Mahone, Soulja Boy, Lil Yachty, Ne-Yo and Akon, and adult film actress Kendra Lust.
Six of the eight artists accused of the violations have subsequently agreed to pay a collective total of $400,000 in disgorgement and penalties. However, the settlements were not an admittance or denial of guilt, according to the SEC. Mahone and Soulja Boy have not, as of yet, agreed to the settlement terms.
"Sun paid celebrities with millions of social media followers to tout the unregistered offerings, while specifically directing that they not disclose their compensation," SEC enforcement chief Gurbir Grewal alleged in a statement included in the SEC's announcement. "This is the very conduct that the federal securities laws were designed to protect against regardless of the labels Sun and others used."
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