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Judge Throws Out DEBT Box Case, Orders SEC to Pay $1.8M

Shalini Nagarajan
Last updated: | 1 min read
DEBT Box

The US District Court for the District of Utah on Tuesday threw out the SEC’s case against DEBT Box and imposed fines exceeding $1.8m on the regulatory body for its bad faith actions.

The fines cover legal fees and court costs. This penalty follows the court’s finding that the SEC misled the judge to get a temporary order in its favor.

In the same May 28 filing, Judge Robert Shelby approved the SEC’s request to dismiss the ongoing case without prejudice, enabling the agency to file a related case in the same court before the judge at a later time.

DEBT Box and its co-defendants argued that the case should be dismissed with prejudice to bar the SEC from initiating additional enforcement measures against the company. Nonetheless, the company expressed satisfaction with the ruling, considering it a favorable outcome.

“This is a significant win for us. It means that the SEC cannot proceed with the case as it stands,” the firm said on X.

Debt Box Challenges SEC’s $49M Fraud Case


The judge cited a March ruling, where it said the SEC acted in bad faith when it got a temporary freeze on DEBT Box’s assets. The firm later went to court alleging the commission’s information was wrong, which could result in sanctions against the SEC.

In a July 2023 lawsuit, the SEC alleged that Debt Box ran a fraudulent $49m scheme selling “node licenses” that promised profits from mining cryptocurrencies. The SEC claims these currencies were never actually mined, casting doubt on the entire operation’s validity.

The DEBT Box case underwent an unexpected twist when the defendants contested the SEC’s allegations. The regulatory body had obtained a temporary restraining order to freeze the assets of the crypto platform. However, the defendants accused the SEC of distorting facts to get it.

In response, Judge Robert Shelby demanded an explanation from the SEC regarding its actions. Confronted with scrutiny, the SEC’s attorneys admitted errors but appealed to the judge to refrain from imposing formal sanctions.