The high court in Shandong province said in public comments that “cryptocurrency is not protected by law” after the review of a case involving virtual tokens, reports the South China Morning Post. The ruling may set a precedent now that investment and trading in digital assets such as bitcoin is outlawed.
In the case, the plaintiff invested RMB 70,000 ($10,756) to buy tokens endorsed by three friends in 2017, but the accounts were closed after the People’s Bank of China, the central bank, reiterated the ban on payment institutions supporting cryptocurrency transactions in 2018.
An intermediate court in Shandong’s capital city Jinan ruled in January 2021 that the plaintiff’s fraud allegation was not tenable because the assets did not have any legal status. Jinan city’s intermediate court upheld the ruling when the plaintiff appealed in March, according to the official verdict.