A federal judge has temporarily halted a proposed deal between Voyager and Binance.US in order to give the government more time to pursue appeals that challenge the deal.
Voyager Digital’s $1 billion sale to Binance.US has been temporarily halted by a federal judge after a request by the United States government for an emergency stay.
The request for an emergency stay was granted by Judge Jennifer Rearden of the U.S. District Court in New York on March 27, meaning the potential deal between Voyager and Binance.US will now need to wait until at least a decision is made on the Department of Justice’s appeal against the bankruptcy plan.
The DOJ filed the emergency application for a stay on March 17. This motion was promptly challenged by Voyager Digital and the Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors on March 20 and responded to again by the DOJ in a final “reply” motion on March 21.
In its latest order, Judge Rearden summarized:
“Upon consideration of all parties’ written submissions, as well as the conferences and oral argument held in this matter, the Government’s emergency motion is hereby GRANTED.”
The federal judge will soon release an opinion explaining the decision in more depth.
The cryptocurrency trading firm filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy on July 5 and has been proactive in coordinating a plan to redistribute funds ever since.
The Binance.US acquisition of Voyager was granted by Judge Wiles on March 7. Part of that approval involved the issuance of bankruptcy tokens to impacted Voyager customers.
However, U.S. regulators have made multiple attempts have been made to halt the deal.
In addition to the DOJ, the U.S. Securities Exchange Commission argued in a March 15 motion that Voyager’s bankruptcy plan would give rise to fraud, theft or tax avoidance. However, this claim was later denied by Judge Michael Wiles.
The Voyager Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors explained in a March 27 Twitter post that they “will continue to aggressively oppose the Government’s efforts.”
2/ As a result, the Debtors' plan cannot go effective and distributions cannot be made until the Government's appeal of the confirmation order is complete or the stay is vacated by a higher court.
— Voyager Official Committee of Unsecured Creditors (@VoyagerUCC) March 27, 2023
Over 97% of 61,300 Voyager account holders favor the restructuring plan, according to a poll released in a Feb 28 court filing. The plan is expected to pay out 73% of what Voyager customers are owed.