- Delo dropped its lawsuit against fintech company Wise after complying with its request to hand over data
- Wise previously submitted three reports of suspicious activity in Delo to the UK crime agency
The co-founder of crypto derivatives exchange BitMEX who was released from prison will challenge the top British agency over his rights to his own data, which he claims has been withheld.
BitMEX insider Benjamin Delo has been granted permission to seek a judicial review against the UK’s data watchdog, claiming the agency has failed to give him the right to personal information.
Delo’s lawyer, Matt Getz, said the UK High Court had approved his client’s request for judgment against the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO).
“Mr. Delo took this legal action reluctantly, but out of principle, wanting to ensure that entities such as Wise comply with data protection obligations and that the ICO meets the information rights of individuals, which is in the wider public interest,” Getz said in an email statement for Blockworks.
The agreement comes after Delo dropped legal action against London-based fintech firm Wise, formerly known as TransferWise, which was forced to open a suspicious activity report linked to the account.
Delo claims the ICO failed to uphold the right of access, which allows data owners to obtain copies of information that companies may have. They sued Wise earlier this year after repeated attempts since 2020 to obtain personal data, saying they had the right to do the following. UK Data Protection Act 2018.
“It is disappointing that in the end it proved necessary to start a formal legal process to obtain the data that Mr. Delo, and certainly has a legal right to,” said Getz.
Wise bowed to his request in June. But Delo still wants to argue with the ICO for “failing to do its duty and ensure that Wise fulfills its obligations.”
An ICO spokesperson told Blockworks that they would not be commenting at this time as the matter is ongoing.
The development was first reported by Law360.
Delo said in a February statement that it had the right to obtain copies of data from Wise, including three suspicious activity reports, that the company sent to the National Crime Agency, according to Law360.
He also claims Wise accidentally closed his account in November 2020 after he transferred £300,000 (then worth $408,000) from a Hong Kong-based HSBC account to Wise’s account.
Wise said it has continued to hold cash for 135 days after closing the account, which means Delo cannot earn interest on the balance. The move to close Delo’s account comes weeks after he drew the attention of US authorities.
BitMEX co-founder on probation for violating Bank Secrecy Act
In October 2020, the US Department of Justice charged Delo, along with co-founder Arthur Hayes and two other high-level BitMEX employees, illegally operated a crypto derivatives platform in violation of the US Bank Secrecy Act.
both sides plead guilty to count one of violating the Bank Secrecy Act by failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program at BitMEX. Separately, the co-founders agreed to pay a $10 million civil monetary penalty in February of this year, imposed by the CFTC.
In June, Delo was sentenced 30 months probation without home detention, when Hayes was handed two years of probation with six months of home detention, as well as monitoring the location.
BitMEX declined to comment, saying the matter was personal to Delo.
This article was updated on August 4 at 1:30 PM ET.
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