Bulgarian prosecutors end investigation into cryptocurrency firm Nexo

Bulgaria’s prosecutor’s office said on December 22 that it closed the investigation into cryptocurrency firm Nexo after finding no evidence of money laundering, tax crimes, computer fraud, and providing banking services without a licence.

The probe, opened following a raid on Nexo’s offices in January, was touted at the time by then-deputy prosecutor general Borislav Sarafov, who is now acting prosecutor general, as a major investigation into financial crimes, in which Bulgarian investigators were assisted by “partner services.”

Four people were charged with being part of an organised crime group that operated in Bulgaria, UK, Switzerland and the Cayman Islands since 2018.

However, the prosecutor’s office statement on December 22 said that Bulgaria had no regulatory framework regarding cryptocurrency assets and Nexo’s products were neither investment, nor financial instruments.

At the time, Nexo was under investigation by the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) on charges of failing to register a “retail crypto asset lending product” with regulators.

Shortly after Bulgarian prosecutors opened their probe, the SEC announced that the company agreed to pay $45 million to settle the charges and consented to the cease-and-desist order prohibiting it from violating the registration provisions of the US Securities Act of 1933.

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