Athena Blockchain Lawyer Joins Carlton Fields To Help ICO Issuers for Token Litigation Cases


Andrew Hinkes, a blockchain lawyer, has recently decided to help Initial Coin Offering (ICOs) issuers to fight back the system. He was previously the general counsel at Athena Blockchain, a blockchain-based investment bank, and he also was a law professor at the New York University.

According to Andrew Hinkes, ICO and token issuers will start to press the government soon in order to understand how to be compliant and demand clearer guidance for the whole process os launching tokens.

In a recent interview with Coindesk, Hinkes affirmed that he joined Carlton Fields in order to protect tokens issuers. According to him, their interest is in the companies who want to fight back and start using the litigation process as a way that they will understand better the whole process.

Hinkes has already been a member of the blockchain community for a long time now and he advised several companies on the legal fronts of the blockchain innovation. Before working with blockchain companies, he has defended corporate clients from the industries of real estate, construction and also defended consumer fraud cases.

Now, his goal is to be the bridge that will connect these companies with the law. Justin S. Wales, co-chair of Carlton Fields, has affirmed that the expertise of the team in several areas will be very important in the space now, as cases like this have increased a lot in the last four years and the industry has many gray areas of uncertainty.

The duo believes that there is a lot of space for more litigation now and that they pursue it both in the sphere of regulatory enforcement and civil ligation as well.

Hinkes will continue his work on Athena Blockchain and of being a professor at the New York University, however. He will not go full time in this new venture. During his interview, he said that it may seem strange for a person to have stakes in both a law firm and a bank, but they are comfortable with the fact for now.

Ready To Go To Court

One case mentioned by the lawyer during the interview was of the blockchain startup Kik. The company announced two months ago that it would go to court to prove that its ICO was not unregistered security sales.

Most companies are currently being very careful at the moment and they are trying to work closely with the regulators in order not to be accused of anything. However, the companies who already sold their token might simply not have a choice other than simply attacking because that is surely what the SEC will do about them.

Hinkes affirmed that there is no comprehensive regulation for the industry at the moment and that this is the main argument that the companies need to use. They do not know how to act because the information was not properly provided to them.

“A bunch of orders” is not regulation neither a law, Hinkes affirmed during his interview. The authorities need to offer more guidance if they are willing to go after these companies, or they simply cannot blame them for not following a regulation that does not exist at the moment.

The lawyer affirms that he expects a lot of criminal and civil suits soon and that people will basically need to get over this phase before the blockchain industry is finally allowed to blossom by the regulators.

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