The 38-year-old Russian man was detained in a small village in northern Greece. US authorities suspect him of creating a $4 bln Bitcoin laundering scheme.
27 July, AtoZForex – Reportedly, one Russian man created $4 bln Bitcoin laundering scheme. The name of the arrestee is Alexander Vinnik. The 38-year-old Russian man was detained in a small village in northern Greece on Tuesday. Specifically, the US Justice Department has carried investigation along with a number of other federal agencies.
US authorities accuse Russian man of $4 bln Bitcoin laundering scheme
Alexander Vinnik was detained on suspicion of running a Bitcoin exchange operator and laundering over $4 billion. Reportedly, the money was handed over to people involved in a range of illegal activities.
The US officials accused the man of running a firm which illegitimately received money without following appropriate protocols against money laundering. Moreover, they claimed that Alexander was associated with the failure Mt. Gox. In fact, Mt. Gox is a Bitcoin exchange based in Japan which collapsed in 2014.
US authorities stated that the Mr. Vinnik is the operator of BTC-e, an exchange that used to trade Bitcoin since 2011. As it is said in the statement, the arrestee obtained funds through hacking the company and laundering them through BTC-e and Tradhelli – his own exchange based in San Francisco.
However, Alexander refrained from any comments on the topic. Brian Stretch, US Attorney for the Northern District of California, has stated:
“Just as new computer technologies continue to change the way we engage each other and experience the world, so too will criminals subvert these new technologies to serve their own nefarious purposes.”
An internationally sought ‘mastermind’
Furthermore, the Greek police have described Vinnik as “an internationally sought ‘mastermind’ of a crime organization.” Mr. Vinnik is escorted by plain-clothes police officers to a court in Thessaloniki, Greece.
As you might know, it is possible to purchase Bitcoins and spend them anonymously via the use of digital wallets. Each of the cryptocurrency wallets has the unique addresses, while the transactions are being reflected on a public ledger called Blockchain.
US authorities believe that Mr. Vinnik has facilitated crimes. These include hacking, fraud, identity theft, tax refund fraud, public corruption and drug trafficking. BTC-e has been out of service for more than a day. It has stated it has been performing “unplanned maintenance.”
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