CFTC Denies FOIA Request for Bitfinex and Tether Subpoenas

The top U.S. futures regulator has denied a Liberty of Details Act (FOIA) ask for for subpoenas reportedly issued to crypto exchange Bitfinex and the intently-joined ‘stablecoin’ operator Tether, according to documents received by CoinDesk.

The FOIA ask for sought “subpoenas issued to iFinex inc. also acknowledged as Bitfinex and it really is subsidiary corporations, as well as subpoenas issued Tether Confined and its subsidiary corporations” and was initially submitted in February.

The submitting arrived months soon after reports initially indicated that Bitfinex and Tether had been subpoenaed by the Commodity Futures Buying and selling Fee (CFTC), while it really is not very clear what, particularly, is currently being investigated. That information followed the revelation that the romantic relationship between Tether – which operates the greenback-joined token USDT – and its auditor, Friedman, had “dissolved.”

In its reaction to the FOIA ask for, dated June 5, the CFTC wrote that it discovered “countless numbers of responsive documents, all of which are exempt from the FOIA’s disclosure requirement,” heading on to cite a selection of exemptions in denying the ask for, including a single frequently applied to regulation enforcement investigations.

“Some documents are exempt from disclosure less than FOIA Exemption 7(A), 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(7)(A), since disclosure of that product could fairly be predicted to interfere with the perform of the Commission’s regulation enforcement functions,” the letter said.

The letter contained a further exemption citation aimed at shielding the confidentiality of sources, noting:

“Some documents were being received on the condition that the company preserve the source of the data private. Those documents are exempt from disclosure less than FOIA Exemption 7(), 5 U.S.C. § 552(b)(7)(D). That exemption is supposed to be certain that “private sources are not dropped since of retaliation towards the sources for previous disclosures or since of the sources’ anxiety of upcoming disclosures.”

“We routinely acquire authorized procedure/inquiries from regulation enforcement brokers and regulators conducting investigations, and it is our policy not to comment on the specifics of any these requests,” Bitfinex’s head of marketing and advertising, Kasper Rasmussen, told CoinDesk by e mail.

When attained, a representative for the CFTC declined to comment, including that it could not affirm or deny the existence of any investigations.

FOIA graphic by way of Shutterstock

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