Crypto-assets, very high fines and imprisonment for those who violate the new regulations

It’s ready decree on crypto-assetsdeveloped by the government in implementation of EU Regulation 2023/1114, the so-called NOT (Markets in Crypto-assets Regulation), approved about a year ago and operational partly from next June 30th (stablecoins and electronic money tokens) and in general from December 30th of this year.

The decree in question, being examined by the Government, regulates the issuing and offering of cryptocurrencies and other assets electronic, the competent supervisory authorities – Consob and Bankitalia – and also the fines and criminal sanctions for offenders, which can vary between 5 thousand and 5 million euros.

What MICA regulates

The European Regulation regulates three types of crypto-assets in particular:

  • The stablecoins or tokens linked to assets;
  • the electronic money token;
  • the different crypto-assets from the first two.

The MICA also sets standards for service providers related to crypto-assetsalso called crypto-assets service providers (CASP), and on trading platforms of electronic activities. Also included rules for public offers of these tools.

The government decree

The decree being studied by the government, as mentioned, provides for the implementation of this regulation and makes some choices relating to competence on the topic of supervision of the sector, attributing jointly to Consob and Bank of Italy the necessary powers (in some cases only to Bankitalila).

The choice of our legislator is motivated by the objective of preserve financial stability and ensure the orderly functioning of digital asset markets. For some time, in fact, the monetary authorities and other international bodies have warned that cryptocurrencies do not have an underlying value and therefore pose risks to macroeconomic stability and financial, as well as encouraging various types of fraud.

Very high fines (including criminal ones)

The decree being studied by the Government, in implementation of the MICA, also contains very high administrative and criminal finesfor violators of the rules, both for those who violate the rules regarding emission and authorization, and for those who manipulate the market (more serious cases).

In more detail, the imprisonment from six months to 4 years and one fine from 2 thousand to 10 thousand euros for those who offer to the public or request admission to trading tokens linked to activities in violation of community regulations and, above all, in the absence of the required authorization from the issuer, but also for some violations of CASPs (service providers relating to crypto-assets).

Administrative sanctions are different depending on whether they are natural or legal persons (companies) For legal entitiespenalties may vary from 30 thousand to 5 million euros, or to a figure that varies between 3% and 12.5% ​​of turnover annual. For them natural personsthe fine goes from 5 thousand to 75 thousand EUR.

For more serious offenses relating to the cases ofabuse of dominant positionOf illicit communication of inside information or handling of the market, a fine is expected from 5 thousand to 5 million of Euro.