- Status Network ICO investors who feel they were sold unregistered securities have requested to serve their opponents via email or social media
- Jarrad Hope and Carl Bennetts cannot be physically located and so plaintiffs’ counsel is seeking alternative means
- OneCoin victims served Dr Ruja Ignatova via email this year
Investors in Status Network, an ICO that raised $100 million in 2017, are seeking leave to serve the founders with a charge of selling unregistered securities via social media. With the Status Network founders unable to be traced however, the plaintiffs’ representatives have asked to serve papers via email or social media as this is the only known avenue through which they can be relatively sure it will be seen.
Status Network Founders Remain Untraceable
Status Network was one of the plethora of blockchain projects that made hay in the 2017 cryptocurrency bubble, raising $100 million in under 24 hours during their ICO in June of that year. The project, which promised to build decentralized dApps on top of Ethereum, rocketed to $0.66 in early January 2018 before crashing to the $0.02 region in November of that year, where it has remained ever since:
Investors in Status Network tried to sue the founders, Jarrad Hope and Carl Bennetts, for selling unregulated securities last year but have been unable to locate the founders in order to serve them in person, despite several lines of enquiry:
Plaintiff’s counsel has, among other things, 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.
They have also hired a private investigator, but the Status Network leaders seem to have hidden themselves well as they have still not been found, with the only lead being that they believe the pair are living in Switzerland.
Plaintiffs Seek Digital Serving
Given the lack of a physical address, attorneys for the plaintiffs’ lawyers have asked to serve them through email and social media before the case gets thrown out. However these methods are currently “not prohibited by any international agreement”, meaning the judge in the case will have to break with convention to allow it.
The plaintiffs do have some precedence to call upon – in January, OneCoin victims in California were given leave to serve founder Dr Ruja Ignatova via email after her whereabouts could not be ascertained. However, this was an exceptional case, and it is unlikely that the judge in this case will be similarly disposed to break with legal convention for the aggrieved Status Network victims.