NEW YORK A U.S. lawsuit accusing Japan’s Mizuho Bank of concealing problems at the now-bankrupt Tokyo-based Mt Gox bitcoin exchange can move forward, a federal judge in Chicago has ruled.
U.S. District Judge Gary Feinerman rejected on Monday the bank’s argument that the case belongs in Japan, finding that the hardship to the bank from trying the case in the United States would be no more than that “routinely tolerated by courts.”
Mizuho provided banking services for the exchange and handled all deposits for U.S. customers. It is part of Mizuho Financial Group Inc (8411.T), one of Japan’s largest banks by assets.
The proposed class action on behalf of the exchange’s U.S. customers was filed in February 2014, the same month Mt Gox filed for bankruptcy after losing an estimated half a billion dollars worth of customers’ bitcoin digital currency. Once the world’s largest exchange for bitcoins, Mt Gox blamed hackers for stealing the vanished currency.
Customers agreed to settle their claims against Mt Gox in April 2014, reaching a deal with outside investors and creditors to receive a share of recovered assets.