In a message dated May 12, Telegram CEO Pavel Durov announced that after a long struggle with the SEC, his company officially terminated its participation in the TON and Gram projects, which were launched in 2017.
In his post entitled “What is the TON project, and why was it stopped?” Durov said that such a decision was made in response to a decision of the US court to ban companies from distributing Gram tokens anywhere in the world.
Durov wrote: “An American court has stated that Gram cannot be distributed not only in the United States but throughout the world. Why? Because they believe that US citizens can find some other way to access the TON platform after launch. To prevent this, you cannot allow the distribution of Gram anywhere in the world - even if some other country on the planet could get along with TON.”
Durov’s post sharply criticized the gendarmerie role of the US government, as well as its efforts to prevent the launch of the TON project, which was to be based on the principles of decentralization, first applied in Bitcoin (BTC) and Ethereum (ETH).
Durov wrote that the world community is still heavily dependent on the United States when it comes to finances and new technologies. Durov pointed out that in this aspect, "96% of the world's population depends on 4% living in the United States."
According to Pavel Durov, the decision of the American court violates the sovereignty of all jurisdictions in the world:
“Such a court decision implies that other countries have no right to decide what is good and what is bad for their citizens. If the USA suddenly decided to ban coffee and demanded that coffee shops be closed in Italy, because some Americans could come there, then hardly anyone would accept such a demand.”
This seems to be a complete failure of Telegram in a long-standing legal battle with the US SEC. The SEC filed a lawsuit against the company in October 2019, a few days before the planned launch of TON. In the lawsuit, the regulator accused Telegram of violating the "US Securities Act" by conducting an ICO of $ 1.7 billion in 2018.
In March 2020, a U.S. court stated that the SEC could well prove that GRAM is unregistered securities.
On April 30, Pavel Durov proposed a settlement plan for investors, apparently given such a court decision.