Melbourne-based cryptocurrency lender Helio Lending Pty Ltd has been charged with falsely claiming that it held an Australian credit licence (ACL) when it did not.

Helio Lending offered cryptocurrency-backed loans to consumers, using the digital currency as security over the loan.

ASIC alleges that around 20 February 2019, Helio Lending falsely represented on its website that it held ACL 391330.

ASIC further alleges that Helio Lending published or allowed to be published on its website a news article dated 10 September 2018 that claimed it held ACL 391330.

ASIC alleges that Helio Lending was neither an ACL holder nor a representative of an ACL holder.

The matter is next listed for mention on 7 July 2022 in the Melbourne Magistrate’s Court.

ACLs are required to undertake credit activity. Strict penalties can apply to those who unlawfully engage in credit activities.

This matter is being prosecuted by the Commonwealth Director of Public Prosecutions.

Background

Claiming that you have an ACL if you do not is a breach of section 30 of the National Consumer Credit Protection Act 2009. The maximum penalty for an individual per criminal contravention is 1 year imprisonment and/or a fine of $25,200. The maximum penalty that can be imposed on a body corporate for a criminal contravention of section 30 is 10 times the maximum individual fine.

Originally published by ASIC