Stablecoin Circle Adds Star Lawyer During SEC Crypto Crackdown

Circle Internet Financial has announced the appointment of Heath Tarbert as Senior Legal Director and Head of Corporate Affairs. Tarbert, a veteran of Big Law and the federal government, has joined Circle as the company faces increased scrutiny amid enforcement action against major exchanges like Binance and Coinbase.

Tarbert’s new employer is a stablecoin issuer that creates and manages US Dollar Coins (USDC), a popular currency pegged to the US dollar. A statement released Thursday said Circle is offering the big guns for a potential fight with regulators. Tarbert will join the issuer as Chief Legal Officer and Head of Corporate Affairs effective July 1, 2023. He will replace Flavia Naves, who was General Counsel at Circle.

Tarbert’s experience

The department’s decision seems wise. The new employee isn’t just a former partner at the prominent law firm Allen & Overy. He has a proven track record in government and organizational leadership. Tarbert has held positions in all three branches of the federal government and major regulatory agencies.

Tarbert has served as Chairman and CEO of the CFTC, Vice President of the International Organization of Securities Commissions, and Assistant US Treasury Secretary for International Markets. He has held various positions in the G7/20, the Financial Stability Board, and the World Bank Group.

Cryptocurrency exchanges and issuers need all the help they can get. Tarbert’s hire comes as the SEC steps up its crackdown on the cryptocurrency industry. This week, the agency filed lawsuits against the two largest exchanges in the world, Binance and Coinbase.

Both of the SEC’s most recent targets deny the allegations against them. They say they will vigorously fight the charges.


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