It’s never a good sign when a judge says the argument in favor of your motion, “is less than straightforward, to be polite.” Unfortunately for messaging app turned blockchain developer Telegram, that's exactly what federal Judge P. Kevin Castel said when its lawyers asked him to “clarify” whether it could sell of gram tokens outside the U.S. while an SEC lawsuit delays the launch of its TON blockchain.
Telegram had planned to launch the Telegram Open Network, or TON, blockchain on Oct. 31, 2019. At that time, it planned to create 2.9 billion gram tokens, which sold to the general public. The SEC said that public sale would be an unregistered and illegal securities offering, and sued to block it.
A federal judge issued a preliminary injunction stopping Telegram's planned resale of $1.7 billion in gram tokens, saying it is "part of a larger scheme to distribute those Grams into a secondary public market."
Telegram has been locked in a fierce legal battle with the Security and Exchange Commission, which wants to block the company’s initial coin offering and halt the launch of its Telegram Open Network, or TON, blockchain. But that hasn’t stopped the messaging app company from pushing forward with the technical details of its project. On Feb. 3, Telegram issued the latest version of its technical whitepaper for its TON blockchain—a key piece in actually launching its gram tokens and fulfilling the promises it made to its investors.