Economy

SEC issues halt order against Gaza’s Xian Coin

The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has issued a halt order against “digital currency” Xian Coin (XNC), founder and owner Christian Albert Soriano Gaza or Xian Gaza, and those involved in offering and selling of the securities to the public.

In a cease-and-desist order dated Nov. 3, the regulator noted Xian Coin is not registered as a corporation or as a partnership and it also does not have a secondary license to operate as a broker or dealer of securities.

“The commission will institute the appropriate administrative and criminal action against any persons or entities found to act as solicitors, information providers, salesmen, agents, brokers, dealers, or the like for and on their behalf,” the SEC said.

The commission released an advisory against Xian Coin in June, warning investors that Mr. Gaza had previously said earnings from XNC will be used to fund his “underground activities.”

Aside from not having the required registration and secondary license from the SEC, XNC is also not a registered Virtual Asset Service Provider (VASP) with the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas (BSP).

It also lacks a white paper, which is a document that should detail the design and how it will generate business, and it also does not have a working model.

Xian Coins are said to be offered to the public through websites and through social media pages.

“Investors are being lured to buy Xian Coins because there is a guarantee that its value is steadily rising, and may even become double or triple after a few months or years,” the SEC said in the order.

However, despite the issuance of the advisory, the commission’s Enforcement and Investor Protection Department (EIPD) continued to receive reports and a complaint about XNC’s sale, solicitation activities and also continued to offer investments to the public.

“[It was also] found that Xian Gaza even published online false and misleading information to the effect that the commission has agreed to receive the amount of 10% of the total sales of XNC in exchange for not attacking his businesses,” the SEC said.

The cease-and-desist order of the SEC against Xian Coins and all those involved prohibits them from “transacting any business” involving the funds, assets, and properties that are covered by the order through bank deposits, among others, “to ensure the preservation of the assets for the benefit of the investors.” — Keren Concepcion G. Valmonte

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