US indicts 12 Russian nationals for money laundering and hacking

The US has indicted 12 Russian foreign nationals for hacking, conspiracy and money laundering for allegedly interfering with the 2016 US presidential election. According to the indictment, Russia operated an intelligence agency called GRU which obtained confidential documents from the Clinton campaign systems by hacking and systematically released them to sway public opinion. According to [...]

23 members of transnational criminal organization arrested for money laundering

Europol announced today that the Spain and Columbia collectively arrested 23 members of an unidentified transnational criminal organization (the “Group”) involved in laundering the proceeds of crime on behalf of other unidentified transitional criminal organizations. The Group didn’t launder a lot of money – only €2 million.  The Group allegedly used Bitcoin to launder funds [...]

Woman who bought Bitcoin with $300,000 in cash in grocery bags, going to jail for one year

A woman in California, who admitted operating an unlicensed in-person digital currency exchange where she traded cash for Bitcoin,  was sentenced today to 12 months in federal prison, three years of supervised release, and a fine of US$20,000. Theresa Tetley pled guilty to conducting an illegal business and engaging in unlawful monetary transactions involving Bitcoin, and laundering [...]

Court in China approves Blockchain as a source of evidence

A Court in China has ruled that Blockchain technology can be used to provide evidence in litigation in a first-of-its-kind decision. The litigation involved the ownership of intellectual property, where a claim of IP was recorded on the Blockchain. The Hangzhou Court of the Internet in China’s Zhejiang Province ruled that information stored on the [...]

35 darknet drug traffickers arrested in the US; $20 million in Bitcoin seized

Over 35 people were arrested in a US-wide sweep by the US DOJ, DEA, US Secret Service, ICE, HSI and the FBI agents for selling illegal drugs over the darknet and laundering the proceeds of crime using, inter alia, Bitcoin. The operation involved agents posing as digital currency exchanges to obtain personal information of drug [...]

Darknet drug trafficker with over $1 million in Bitcoin and Litecoin sentenced in US

25-year-old Matthew Yensan, from North Carolina, was sentenced to 78 months incarceration today for producing Xanax and Alprazolam, selling them on the darknet and laundering the proceeds of crime using, inter alia, Bitcoin and Litecoin. According to the indictment, Yensan had a Glock 27 .40, a Smith & Wesson Revolver .357, a Colt King Cobra [...]

US Govt Issues Sanctions Against Venezuela’s ICO – the Petro Coin

Executive Order  President Trump issued an Executive Order imposing economic sanction on the initial coin offering (“ICO“) by the Government of Venezuela, called the Petro Coin (the “Petro ICO“). The Executive Order makes it illegal to engage in transactions, dealings or financings in connection with the Petro ICO, which would include buying, selling, trading, marketing, [...]

The non-techie guide to the Blockchain, distributed ledger tech and Bitcoin

This guide to Bitcoin, Blockchain, distributed ledger tech, and digital currencies is taken from a collection of presentations, comments, speeches we’ve made at global conferences and articles written by us from 2012 to 2015. Bitcoin Consumer payments and ways of transferring value in Canada and globally have shifted over the last several decades from paper-based media, [...]

US to adopt national money laundering & terrorist financing strategy that includes risks from digital currencies

US President Trump signed new sanctions legislation into law on August 3, 2017, against Iran, Russia and North Korea, and at the same time, adopted a new national strategy to combat terrorist financing and money laundering. The legislation, “HR3364 – Countering America’s Adversaries Though Sanctions Act” is more than about sanctions. In large part, it’s [...]

BTC-e was the Bitcoin exchange for 95% of global ransomware extortions

According to tracing that was revealed this week at the Black Hat USA Conference, BTC-e was the Bitcoin exchange that serviced over 95% of all the ransomware extortion payments globally since 2014. Researchers wrote scripts that extracted payments to Bitcoin wallet addresses to determine what exchanges was used for extortion payments. The research also showed that [...]