Cryptocurrency entrepreneur and Quebec FCA member Jonathan Hamel has come under fire for intentionally misleading members of the Canadian Parliament.
Hamel, who has been involved in cryptocurrencies since 2013 and a notable supporter of Segwit Core (BTC), made the misleading comments at a hearing in front of the Standing Committee on Finance, having previously alluded to his plan on social media.
Posting on Reddit ahead of presenting his evidence to the committee, Hamel solicited donations to say that Bitcoin Cash was a ‘scam’, in an intentional bid to prop up BTC at the expense of Bitcoin.
His decision to include an address for donations has come under particular criticism, calling into question the quality of the evidence presented to Canadian lawmakers.
According to his Reddit post, Hamel was keen for adverse comments about Bitcoin Cash to be recorded in Canadian parliamentary archives: “Spoiler: I’m gonna say “Bcash is a scam” and it’s gonna be archived forever in the Parliamentary records (not a blockchain but still…). Donations are welcome.”
In addition to receiving around $8 in donations for his comments, Hamel also alluded to the fact that he was long on Segwit Core, and that his intention was to portray alternatives to Segwit Core as universally illegitimate.
Hamel told the committee it should be concerned with currencies other than Segwit Core, alleging they have no merit in their own right, and are inherently fraudulent.
“Other cryptocurrencies are downright scams, like Bcash,” the businessman said.
His behaviour has infuriated members of the Bitcoin community, with dozens of social media posts highly critical of his intentional efforts to mislead Canadian authorities. In particular, his position vis a vis his membership of the FCA, the leading regulator in the crypto space, has led to staunch criticism of his tactics.
Critical press reports have been widespread in recent days, drawing attention to the fact that Hamel, as a presumed expert, was allowed to intentionally mislead Canadian lawmakers with little to no existing background knowledge on cryptocurrencies or blockchain technology.
Furthermore, misleading parliament is a criminal offence in Canada, and there are now growing calls for Hamel to be brought to task for his actions.