Crypto News, in a recent development, Melbourne-based cryptocurrency lending firm, Helio Lending, has been handed a bond sentence for falsely asserting that it possessed an Australian credit license.
Helio Lending Faces Bond Sentence Over Misleading License Claims
Helio Lending, a crypto lending firm based in Australia, has been sentenced to a non-conviction good behavior bond, valid for a year, due to its false claims of holding a local credit license. This announcement was made by the Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) on August 17.
Under the terms of this bond, Helio Lending is liable to pay 15,000 Australian dollars (equivalent to $9,600) if they breach the conditions of good behavior over the next year. It’s worth noting that good behavior bonds are typically issued for minor offenses. In this case, the non-conviction implies that Helio will only face a conviction if it violates the terms of its bond. The potential penalty of AU$15,000 is considerably milder than the maximum penalty of $160,000 that the firm could have incurred.
The issue arose when Helio Lending falsely claimed in an August 2019 news article on its website that it held an Australian credit license. Following this, ASIC took action and charged the firm in April 2022. Helio Lending later admitted to the false claims, which, according to ASIC, played a role in the final sentencing decision. Consequently, a charge related to the false representation of the license on Helio’s website was dropped.
Helio Lending, which provides loans backed by cryptocurrency, operates as an Australian subsidiary of the US-based crypto-centric public holding company, Cyios Corporation. Cyios Corporation is also the owner of Randombly, a nonfungible token platform that is yet to be launched.
In a late 2018 investor update, Helio Lending stated that it had acquired the said license by purchasing Cash Flow Investments along with its held license.
ASIC’s Stance on Crypto-Related Offenses
This isn’t the first time ASIC has taken action against crypto-related entities. Earlier in August, the regulatory body initiated legal proceedings against the trading platform eToro. The platform was accused of having inadequate screening tests before offering leveraged derivative contracts to its retail investors. Additionally, in December, Finder.com faced a lawsuit from ASIC for offering a crypto yield-bearing product without the necessary license.
The actions taken by ASIC highlight the regulatory body’s commitment to ensuring transparency and adherence to legal requirements in the rapidly evolving cryptocurrency sector.