Feb 18, 2023
“DC Slammed for Ignoring Warnings of Crypto Fraud”
Caitlin Long, CEO of Custodia Bank, has publicly expressed her frustration with the lack of action taken by regulators and lawmakers in Washington D.C. to protect investors from major “fraud” allegedly conducted by now-bankrupted entities.
In a blog post entitled Shame On Washington, DC For Shooting A Messenger Who Warned of Crypto Debacle, Long called out the government for its approach to crypto regulation, accusing them of failing to protect investors and alienating good actors in the space.
Long, who has been vocal in her efforts to build a lawful, compliant alternative to scams in the crypto space, has faced pushback from government agencies. She recounted the slew of negative run-ins Custodia has had of late, including attacks from the White House, Federal Reserve Board of Governors, the Kansas City Fed, and Senator Dick Durbin, who conflated her non-leveraged, 100-percent liquid and solvent bank with FTX in a Senate floor speech.
Long’s sentiments echo those of Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong, who has suggested on multiple occasions that agencies like the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have reacted frostily to his firm’s efforts to maintain a dialogue in good faith.
Armstrong recently criticized the lack of regulatory clarity in the U.S. and what appears to be a “regulation by enforcement” approach following the SEC’s move to shut down Kraken’s staking services on Feb. 9.
Long also took to Twitter to share that before the implosion of several crypto firms in 2022, she and many others had tried to warn Washington and “help law enforcement stop” major fraud, but to no avail. She revealed that she had “handed over evidence to law enforcement of probable crimes” committed by an unnamed crypto firm “months before that company imploded and stuck its millions of customers with losses.”
Kraken co-founder and CEO Jesse Powell responded to Long’s Twitter thread and corroborated her statements by noting that: “I can’t tell you how infuriating it is to have pointed out massive red flags and obviously illegal activity to regulators only to have them ignore the issues for years.”
The Custodia Bank CEO concluded her blog post by saying that calls for a crackdown today are coming from many of the same policymakers who were charmed by the fraudsters. She argued that this 180-degree turn will only push risks into the shadows, leaving regulators to play whack-a-mole as the risks continuously pop up in unexpected places.
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