Two Brazilian Banks Reopen Accounts of Local Crypto Exchange to Avoid Fines31 Oct 2018 12:01
Two major Brazilian banks have reopened the banking accounts of one of the local crypto exchanges experiencing banking issues recently, local crypto outlet Portal do Bitcoin reports Wednesday, Oct. 31.
The preliminary decision to reopen accounts in major banks Banco do Brasil and Santander Brasil for local crypto exchange Bitcoin Max was granted by the Federal District Court. The judge ruled that the mentioned banks failed to notify the exchange of account closure, which was treated as “abusive conduct” violating consumer protection rules. The court then ordered to unlock the accounts within five days.
In case of non-compliance with the injunction, Santander Brasil would have to pay up to 5,000 Brazilian reals (about $1,300), and Banco do Brasil — up to 20,000 Brazilian reals (about $5,400). Leonardo Ranna, a lawyer for the crypto exchange, told local media that the accounts of Bitcoin Max and its partners were subsequently quickly reopened.
However, Portal do Bitcoin stresses that the legal battle is not over as the Federal District Court’s decision is only seen as a “preliminary” kind of injunction. Moreover, Banco do Brasil has also blocked the additional 120,000 Brazilian reals ($32,400) of Bitcoin Max’s funds. The court ordered to return them in 24 hours, according to the report.
As Cointelegraph reported in September, Brazil’s antitrust regulator, the Administrative Council for Economic Defense (CADE), started inspecting six major national banks, including Banco do Brasil and Santander Brasil, for alleged monopolistic practices in the crypto space. The watchdog tried to reveal whether Brazilian banks deliberately closed the accounts of local crypto exchanges following several complaints.
A month later, in October, CADE sent a questionnaire to ten Brazilian crypto exchanges whose banks accounts have previously been closed, with deadline to respond set for mid-October. The companies were requested to explain how their business functioned in Brazil and clarify if they were unable to open a bank account, or if the account was closed by some financial institution.