Bitgrail Exchange Ordered Down Indefinitely as Italian Court Upholds Halt

Earlier this month, Bitgrail’s principal Franceso Firano attempted to reopen the Italian cryptocurrency exchange after $170 million in losses and during their legal sorting out. An inside job or software hack, that hasn’t had an official determination, and fingers are still pointing between the exchange’s charismatic operator and crypto devs. International heavy law firm Bonelli Erede effectively petitioned to have the exchange remain offline, instituting bankruptcy proceedings, and the Court of Florence recently agreed.

Bitgrail Shuttered by Court of Florence

“This morning,” a post on the exchange’s website read earlier this month, “following the re-opening, we were notified of a deed by the court of Florence requesting the immediate closure of Bitgrail and this situation will persist until a decision is made by the courts, about the precautionary suspension request made by the Bonelli law office on behalf of a client […] Even though we don’t agree with this decision, we are obliged to respect the law and to suspend any Bitgrail business immediately.”

This week the court indeed made a decision.

“We have temporarily disabled the Bitgrail exchange pending further notice,” came what appears to be a rather final Tweet from, presumably, the embattled exchange operator Franceso Firano on May 2nd. It’s what remains of communication since an injunction was filed to prevent Mr. Firano from reopening. The exchange was halted, temporarily, and that decision was formally upheld as bankruptcy proceedings loom.

Representing more than 3,000 exchange complainants is the international firm Bonelli Erede. Its team is a veritable who-is-who of Italian legal pros: Partner Monica IacovielloGiuseppe Sbisà, with assistance from senior associates Gianpaolo Ciervo and Alessandra Frigerio. Nano user and Foundation coordinator Espen Enger has also contributed to efforts…

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