Legal challenges from the somewhat established Safex blockchain e-commerce platform target a shadowy company called Safeth LTD, represented by Joseph Lathus and several other named parties, but not very well represented in formal online documentation.
In a court complaint filed Jan. 18, Safex contends that Lathus and others at Safeth have been engaged in using its trademarks and logo to distort its image and confuse investors and others. The legal documents seek to show an egregious case of copyright infringements and deliberate malicious misinformation about the brands in question. They document alleged activity comparing Safex to the “Silk Road” marketplace shut down in 2014, where founder Ross Ulbricht ended up in jail. They show contentions of Safex as an “exit scam” and subsequent delisting activity by exchanges.
Safex challengers also reveal a motive: the full text of Safex complaint reveals that Joseph Lathus had allegedly petitioned to be hired as a marketing consultant. After his rejection, court documents claim, Lathus retaliated by creating Safeth and its “Safex Platinum Token,” which clearly appropriates Safex brand language in a confusing way.
Part of the suspicion around Safeth is its rather thin website and lack of resources on not only the company, but it’s apparent founder. (The first four Google results for Joseph Lathus’s name go to LinkedIn, Facebook, MySpace and Ancestry.com respectively.) The text of the website, too, is confusing and short on details, (see excerpt) and “Safeth” doesn’t show up in many exchange resources, either.
Other parts of the Safex complaint chronicle a story of business fallout including the aforementioned delisting from platforms like Coingecko, and the widespread notion that Safex represents a scam of some kind. But the use of the brand trademarks are a powerful source of confusion in and of themselves, as traders will have a hard time figuring out whether Safex means Safex or Safeth, and who is behind a particular online communication to the public.
Meanwhile, the case will make its way through the courts. Part of the notoriety of this case will revolve around the Safex original business proposition: that its two coins can open up marketplace opportunities. Writers of the complaint alleged that these opportunities are hampered by the havoc that Safeth is creating in the online business world, and around cryptocurrencies and decentralized finance, which are still complex to stakeholders in their infancy. All of Safex’ allegations aside, the naming conventions themselves are a big issue for keeping things straight, and Safeth, certainly, will have some explaining to do.
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