On Friday, a UK judge granted Syscoin’s emergency injunction against Moopay LTD and former Moolah CEO Ryan Kennedy (also known as Alex Green). The injunction bars Kennedy and Moolah from selling the 750 bitcoins Syscoin raised during its initial coin offering and entrusted to the company’s escrow service. If Kennedy violates the injunction, he could face prison time.
After Ryan Kennedy abruptly announced Moolah’s insolvency and then subsequently disappeared, Syscoin demanded Moolah return the money the development team had placed in escrow. They gave Kennedy and Moolah an October 17 deadline to return the coins or face legal action. Moolah did not return the funds, and Syscoin initiated litigation against Kennedy through the London-based (and bitcoin friendly) law firm, Selachii LLP.
According to the law firm, Moolah’s solicitors did not contact Syscoin’s lawyers to discuss the matter. This prompted Syscoin to file an urgent injunction against Moolah. According to Sellachi, a UK High Court judge granted the injunction Friday evening.
Syscoin team manager Dan Wasyluk briefly commented on the matter on the official Syscoin blog. According to Wasyluk, the injunction bars Ryan Kennedy and Moolah from attempting to sell Syscoin’s bitcoins. If Kennedy refuses to return the bitcoins, he could face legal prosecution.
We just had an emergency injunction granted by the High Court in London against Moopay, and Ryan Kennedy personally. If they sell any of our bitcoins they will be in breach of the Injunction and committed to prison.
Our lawyers will be back in the High Court next week to obtain recovery of our bitcoins. If they are not immediately paid back to us, it is likely Ryan Kennedy/Alex Green be imprisoned.
Now that we have the Injunction underway, and the winding up petition issued, we will immediately be contacting the police/sfo etc for his arrest.
Meanwhile, Kennedy has run off with many of MintPal’s approximately 3,700 bitcoins. Initially, it appeared Kennedy had all 3,700 bitcoins, but Moolah recently clarified he does not have all of them. Nevertheless, there are still a great deal of bitcoins missing.
The Moolah scandal is yet another black eye for the cryptocurrency community, reinforcing mainstream stereotypes that cryptocurrency is only used by scammers and other nefarious individuals. Unfortunately, it is unlikely the situation can be resolved in a way that benefits everyone who was hurt by Kennedy’s elaborate schemes, but perhaps some of his victims will see justice. Syscoin did the right thing for its investors during its presale by entrusting its coins to an escrow service, and they should be rewarded for their responsibility–not punished. Hopefully, the injunction will prompt Kennedy to return the stolen bitcoins. If not, Kennedy will have to face the British legal system.
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Disclosure: The author has no affiliations with Moolah or Syscoin, except for using the MintPal and Prelude exchanges.
Images from Syscoin and Shutterstock.