Steven Seagal not Above the Law after settling anti-touting charges

Steven Seagal not Above the Law after settling anti-touting charges

Steven Seagal will hand over $314,000 (£243,500) to officials at America's Securities and Exchange Commission to settle anti-touting charges related to his involvement in a bitcoin venture.

The star of action films like Under Siege and Above the Law was found to have violated federal securities laws after urging fans online to snap up Bitcoiin2Gen tokens following the company's launch in 2018 - without revealing his own interest in the firm.

Seagal had been promised a $250,000 (£194,000) cash payday, as well as another $750,000 (£582,000) in the virtual currency, in exchange for promoting the brand, but his failure to make public his paid position landed him in trouble with authorities, as celebrities are required to "disclose the nature, scope, and amount of compensation received" in exchange for promoting security products.

In a statement, Kristina Littman, chief of the SEC Enforcement Division's Cyber Unit, declares: "These investors were entitled to know about payments Seagal received or was promised to endorse this investment so they could decide whether he may be biased.

"Celebrities are not allowed to use their social media influence to tout securities without appropriately disclosing their compensation."

The 67 year old has since agreed to repay the $157,000 (£122,000) he had so far received from Bitcoiin2Gen bosses, in addition to the same amount as a penalty.

As part of the deal, he does not have to admit to any wrongdoing, although Seagal will refrain from promoting any kind of securities for three years.

Representatives for the star have yet to comment on the news.

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