SEC Wins The McAfee Assistant’s ICO Promotion Case
- SEC has won the case against John McAfee’s assistant, Jimmy Gale Watson
- He was charged with promoting initial coin offerings on social media
The U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York gave the final consent judgment in favor of the United States Security and Exchange Commission (SEC) in the case against John McAfee’s former assistant, Jimmy Gale Watson, Jr., for his alleged role in the promotion of Initial Coin Offerings (ICO) via his social media handle.
Furthermore, according to the final consent statement by the New York district court, Watson is required to pay a whopping $316,408 to the US Treasury in disgorgement. This amount was decided by the SEC based on the profits made by Watson from the promotion of the ICOs.
The court also ruled that Watson won’t have to pay a civil fine. Moreover, McAfee is alleged to have netted more than $23 million from the scheme. Furthermore, Watson has also been banned from issuing, buying, offering or selling any digital assets in any professional capacity. However, he can buy them via his personal accounts.
In 2020, the SEC noted that Watson and McAfee together promoted a number of ICOs via Twitter accounts “from at least November 2017 through February 2018” without informing the audience that they were paid to do so. Hence, the regulatory authority rained down heavily and now, has the case in the bag.
“McAfee leveraged his fame to make more than $23.1 million U.S. Dollars (“USD”) in undisclosed compensation by recommending at least seven “initial coin offerings” or ICOs to his Twitter followers. The ICOs at issue involved the offer and sale of digital asset securities and McAfee’s recommendations were materially false and misleading for several reasons,”stated the DoJ in 2020.
Furthermore, in a separate case, McAfee and Watson were said to have engaged in a “scalping” scheme where they had accumulated a large position of digital assets that they were promoting via Twitter in McAfee’s accounts with the intent of selling it.
According to another complaint, the US Justice Department charged McAfee of tax evasion and finally, the tech executive and crypto promoter was arrested in Spain in 2020.
McAfee was found dead last year in an apparent suicide and as a result, the filed a notice of death for McAfee in federal court, ending its case against him.