U.S. Judge Set Trial Date For OpenSea Former Product Chief On Money Laundering Charges
- Chastain, the product chief at OpenSea, was previously accused of exploiting sensitive OpenSea information to secretly purchase NFTs and resell them for profit.
- Furman also held that “Chastain may be entitled to cross-examine these witnesses about the clarity of the agreement (or lack thereof),” and that the subject might be decided at trial.
The judge rules that the DOJ may refer to the OpenSea NFT case as “Insider Trading,” and sets the trial date on April 24.
The trial date for Nathaniel Chastain, the former product leader of OpenSea, has already been set, according to court documents, and he will face charges on April 24. Chastain will face charges of wire fraud and money laundering if the case gets to trial.
U.S. District Judge Jesse M. Furman stated in a memo posted Friday that “the arguments in the Chastain case regarding whether to use the term ‘insider trading’ are moot.” Chastain granted the government’s motion to have witnesses removed from the case. Opinion Request. The court is also expected to hear directly from Chastain about how he believes his conduct impacted his former company.
Chastain was previously accused of utilizing proprietary OpenSea information to buy and sell NFTs for profit. Unsure if the non-trading constituted securities, the Justice Department charged him with wire fraud notwithstanding the claimed insider trading in violation of securities rules, despite prosecutors insisting his conduct resembled insider trading.
Furman further stated that Chastain may be allowed to cross-examine these witnesses about the clarity (or lack thereof) of the agreement, and that the court may rule on the issue at trial.
In another case involving digital asset insider trading, former Coinbase product manager Ishan Wahi pled guilty in February to two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud. Wahi’s lawyers made a similar argument, attempting to have the SEC’s lawsuit dismissed on the basis that there is still no regulatory clarity that the tokens he exchanged constitute securities.
Prosecutors charged Wahi, his brother Nikkhil, and another, Sameer Ramani, while the SEC filed civil charges against the trio for allegedly breaking securities laws.
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