Aussie Bitcoin trader accuses two banks of discriminatory practices
A cryptocurrency trader based in Australia filed a complaint against two local banks in the region for systematic discrimination practices after these entities allegedly closed his bank accounts without issuing any warning. The trader named Allan Flynn has filed for proceedings against commercial banks ANZ and Westpac and wants compensation of about $192,000.
Flynn claimed that in the last three years, roughly 20 Australian banks have closed his bank accounts connected to his crypto exchange. This was despite the fact that the Bitcoin trader operated a crypto exchange registered with Australian financial monitoring agency – Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre – AUSTRAC. The platform apparently serves about 450 clients.
Other than ANZ and Westpac, CBA, NAB, ING, Bendigo Bank and other banks have allegedly suspended Flynn’s accounts.
The trader claimed that he informed ANZ and Westpac about the purpose of his account. He said that he maintained his account at one of the banks – Westpac – for almost a year, but it allegedly closed his account in five days, without warning. When Flynn asked about the reason, the bank told him that his account was “under investigation for cryptocurrency fraud.” Flynn alleged in a local report that he knew at least “one other trader who has had accounts closed more than 60 times” and added:
How am I supposed to run a lawful business if I can’t get a bank account?
Last year, Flynn approached the Australian Financial Complaints Authority, AFCA . The case was ruled in favor of Westpac and Flynn received $250 in compensation for inconvenience and stress.
Flynn has requested a compensation of $125,000 for emotional distress and is considering raising the amount to $250,000, after watching Bitcoin rally to over $30K.