Ava Labs controversy: AVAX Down as lawyer claims definition trap


Key points to remember

  • Crypto “whistleblower” Crypto Leaks released a report alleging Ava Labs paid law firm Roche Freedman to sue Avalanche competitors over the weekend.
  • Avalanche’s ecosystem is suffering amid controversy.
  • The lawyer who was filmed as part of the Crypto Leaks report said statements he made regarding Ava Labs were “obtained by deceptive means” by an employee of Dfinity founder Dominic Williams.

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The GameFi Trident project has backtracked on its Avalanche launch plan since the Ava Labs allegations surfaced. Avalanche’s AVAX token also fell.

Avalanche suffers amid lawyers’ allegations

Even though recent rumors that Ava Labs secretly collaborated with lawyers to damage other projects are unfounded, they still harm the Avalanche ecosystem.

The GameFi Trident project released an update in response to the allegations on Sunday night, saying it had decided to scrap its Avalanche launch plan. “In light of recent news, Trident will not be rolling out to Avalanche as planned,” the project’s official Twitter account wrote, revealing that it will instead launch on the Ethereum Layer 2 Arbitrum network.

Trident’s update came after self-proclaimed ‘whistleblower’ Crypto Leaks published an article on August 26 alleging that Ava Labs had paid the law firm Roche Freedman to sue Avalanche competitors and keep regulators at bay. The report circulated on Crypto Twitter on Sunday evening, aided by a now-deleted post from Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao. Ava Labs executives Emin Gün Sirer and Kevin Sekniqi both dismissed the report, with Sirer describing it as an “absurd conspiracy theory”.

Investors also bear the brunt of the allegations. As is often the case when a project is hit with bad news, Avalanche’s AVAX token fell more than 8% on Sunday as the Crypto Leaks the article made the rounds. It has since posted a slight recovery to $19.04, down 4.8% in the past 24 hours.

Although the veracity of the claims has been questioned, several crypto commentators have criticized Ava Labs since it surfaced. UpOnly co-host Cobie posted a tweet highlighting how he thinks “biased reporting” and several other points discredit Crypto Leaks, before shooting Ava Labs. “Things that look bad for labs ava…the video lol,” he wrote.

Kyle Roche breaks silence on Ava Labs drama

While Ava Labs has chosen not to issue an official statement on the allegations, Roche Freedman founding partner Kyle Roche, who appeared in a series of undercover music videos as part of Crypto Leaks‘ report, broke his silence about today’s incident. “[The report] contains numerous unsourced misrepresentations and highly edited illegally obtained video clips that are not presented with accurate context,” he wrote.

Roche claims to have been interviewed by Christen Ager-Hanssen, an employee of Dfinity founder Dominic Williams. Roche’s company filed a lawsuit against Dfinity in August 2021. Dfinity is the development team behind Internet Computer, a Layer 1 network that was once among the most anticipated projects in crypto. However, Internet Computer suffered a rapid downfall in 2021 after its ICP token plummeted 95% in a matter of weeks, leading to allegations that Dfinity had been “throwing” coins at investors.

Roche said that although his firm has represented Ava Labs since 2019, the company had no influence on the lawsuits brought by Roche Freedman. “Statements to the contrary in the video are false and were obtained by deceptive means, including a deliberate scheme to intoxicate and then exploit me,” Roche wrote. “Statements are heavily edited and spliced ​​out of context.”

Roche did not explain his comments about how he is helping Ava Labs evade regulatory scrutiny from the SEC and CFTC, nor did he share details of the compensation Rocheman Freed received for representing Ava Labs.

Neither Roche Freedman nor Ava Labs responded to Crypto Briefingrequest for comment on the allegations. Crypto Briefing also reached out to Williams and Ager-Hanssen and will update this article with a comment if they respond.

Disclosure: At the time of writing this article, the author of this article owned ETH and several other cryptocurrencies.

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