- A class lawsuit against the founders of a fraudulent $100 million ICO, Status Network (SNT), is taking a twist as the plaintiffs ask court permission to serve the defendants over social media.
- The request by the SNT ICO investors follows multiple failed attempts to locate the founders and current global travel restrictions due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
In a letter addressed to the New York Southern District Court, the plaintiffs’ counsel led by Selendy & Gay PLLC and Roche Cyrulnik Freedman LLP, requests the court to grant permission to service the defendants and co-founders of the Status Network, Jarrad Hope and Carl Bennetts, through social media. This followed exhaustive measures to find the said defendants but to no avail as the letter states,
“[The plaintiffs] expended significant resources searching through corporate records, social media accounts, websites, blog posts, interviews, government registries, business addresses, and residential addresses both in the United States and abroad. [Despite] the diligent efforts, the plaintiff has been unable to discern an address for either individual defendant.”
The communication woes
The investors filed the class lawsuit earlier in April, alleging SNT’s $100 million initial token offerings back in 2017 amounted to unregistered security. Plaintiffs further claim the co-founders misled them into buying “utility tokens” when under U.S. Securities law, the tokens are unregistered security.
Notwithstanding, Jarrad (CEO of Status) and Bennetts (CCO of the firm) are both officials and founders of the Status Network, allegedly situated in Zug, Switzerland. However, the firm has refused to give up the location of the defendants, the letter states. This has seen the plaintiffs hire private investigators and even try to serve them through the Hague Convention Service Abroad Documents act.
Despite keeping a low profile physically, there remains one avenue that Hope and Bennetts could still be served.
A social media serving?
The letter addressed to the N.Y. court judge requests for a social media serving for the two individuals who are still active on their Twitter pages. Bennetts account is locked, and Jarrad Hope’s Twitter profile shows constant interaction with him retweeting this on Aug 6:
You may feel differently after a sufficiently long, arduous, and turbulent adventure—nobody would blame you either.
— Suhail (@Suhail) August 6, 2020
The motion by the plaintiff’s counsel will allow them to serve the defendants on Twitter directly, LinkedIn, through personal and company emails as well as the official Status communication channels.
While this is not a new motion to the Southern District N.Y. court, with Roche Cyrulnik Freedman LLP serving nChain through Twitter in the infamous Kleinman vs. Craig case earlier in the year.
The filed lawsuit against Status Network is in line with 11 other lawsuits targeting top crypto projects and exchanges for an unlawful offering of securities, as reported by BEG. The date has since been referred to as crypto’s Red Wedding, whereby seven companies and 42 crypto firms are defendants, including Binance, Civic, BProtocol, Status, Block.one, KayDex, Quantstamp, BiBox, TRON Foundation, KuCoin, HDR Global Trading (parent of BitMEX exchange).