The British Columbian Supreme Court has issued a significant ruling in the ‘Copytrack Case’ stemming from a dispute over Ethereum [ETH] tokens mistakenly transferred to an ICO investor and it may have implications for crypto users or exchanges outside of the litigants concerned within the case.
The ruling,thatwas issued by Justice Ronald A. Skolrood,permittedSingapore-based blockchain startup ‘Copytrack’to tracedownand reclaimaround530 Etherum [ETH] that it haderroneouslysent to aninvestorparticipating in its ICO offering. At the time, those 530 ETH were valued ataround$391,000 USD,althoughthey hadsince been declined inworthtoaround$121,000 USD for now but stillis a big amount.
According to documentsrevealedby the court, crypto investor named ‘Brian Wall’ participatedwithin the Copytrack ICO offering, subscribingto buy530 CPY tokens. At the conclusion of the ICO, Copytrack sent Brain 530 tokens, but,abundantto the company’s chagrin, they sent him Ethereum [ETH]instead ofCPY tokens — a token that, ata presentworthofjust5cents.
Brianwhoat firstrefused toreturnthe 530 Ethereum [ETH] to Copytrack, lateragreed to comply. However, heaforementionedthat, before hewassending the funds back tothe corporate, a hacker unlawfully accessed his Ethereum [ETH]digital walletand was able to stealthe funds.Furthereven complicating this legal matter, Brian died before the casecould beresolved.The case raisedmanylegalqueries,including that whether or notthe Ether tokensought tobe classified as goods orsome thingelse, Justice Skolroodhowevermaintained that the crux of the matter is that the tokens belong to Copytrack — uncensorable transactions or not.
Adding further, he said:
“Further,no matterthe characterization of the Ether Tokens,it’sundisputed that they were the property of Copytrack, they were sent toBrian by mistake, theyweren’treturned when they weredemand and Brian has no proprietary claim to them.Whereastheproofof whatwent onto the Ether Tokens since is somewhat murky, thisdoesn’ttake awayfromthe pointthatthey ought totrulybereturned to Copytrack.”
Consequently, Justice Skolrood issuedthe subsequentruling stating:
“An order that Copytrack be entitled to trace and recover the 529.8273791 Ether Tokens received by Brian from Copytrack on15thFeb.2018 inwhatsoeverhands those Ether Tokensmightpresentlybeheld.”
However, the rulingdoesn’tjuststate that Copytrackis that therightful owner of the misplaced Ethereum and that the current holder —whether Brian or a hacker —mightpaythe corporateback the 530 ETH.It’d appearto imply that Copytrack is entitled to those specific tokens,notwithstandingwhois holding them orwhether or not theyreceive them through legitimate for illegitimatemeans.This mightraiseanother thornyproblems,notablyif those fundsaresent to a cryptocurrency exchange andunwittinglydistributedto differenttrader’s externaldigital wallets.
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