US identifies Canada as major money laundering country, and notes concern over its low prosecution rate

Canada once again a “Major Money Laundering” country The 2019 “International Narcotics Control Strategy Report” (INCSR) published on Friday by the U.S. Department of State identifies Canada once again as a “major money laundering country” along with a host of risky countries for financial crime. A “major money laundering country” is one whose banks and financial [...]

Vancouver ICO firm co-founders alleged to have defrauded investors of $30 million over EtherParty ICO

RCMP Investigation According to court filings in Canada, Kevin Hobbs and Lisa Chang, the two co-founders of an ICO called EtherParty FUEL and an associated company, Vanbex, based in Vancouver, are allegedly under investigation by the Federal and Serious Organized Crime Division of the RCMP for, inter alia, fraud and are also allegedly under investigation by [...]

A guy says he gave $3M of Bitcoin to a stranger to sell in Hong Kong and, you guessed it, says he never saw it again

This is one of those stories that could only happen in the Bitcoin world. In June 2017, a guy named Nico Constantijn Samara, from the Netherlands, who owned over 1,000 Bitcoin worth US$3.1 million, travelled to Hong Kong to sell them to a stranger. When he arrived, he discovered that under Hong Kong banking law, [...]

Alleged drug dealer in Vancouver tied to Silk Road facing extradition

A Vancouver man, James Ellingson, is the subject of an extradition request by the US, based on charges that include money laundering and narcotics importation from the Southern District of New York (“SDNY“). Ellingson was arrested in Vancouver on October 29, 2018, under an Extradition Act provisional warrant. According to the SDNY, Ellingson sold drugs on the [...]

Listed terrorist organization asks for Bitcoin

According to an article in CCN today, a person who may be a supporter of HAMAS, a listed terrorist organization, allegedly took to social media – in particular Twitter – to solicit financial support with Bitcoin. The Twitter account is still operational even though, if the story is accurate, the tweet constitutes an attempt at [...]

World’s first bi-national government issued digital currency launched in Middle East

Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates announced yesterday in Abu Dhabi that they have created and launched a joint new bi-national digital currency. The name of the coin has not been released, not the type, not the amount issued, nor its price per coin. According to the governments of both nations, the new Saudi [...]

Dark Overlord hacks into US law firm systems and obtains 9/11 files

According to news media, the hacking group Dark Overlord has hacked the systems of a large law firm in the US and obtained privileged and confidential records that were published online at Pastebin. The files are allegedly encrypted and the group is seeking payment in Bitcoin, failing which they will make all the documents available. [...]

FinCEN issues money laundering advisory for Iran’s use of Bitcoin and digital currencies

FinCEN has issued an advisory for Iran that specifically is targeted for digital currency exchanges, banks and foreign banks so that the latter can understand their obligations under the correspondent banking system. The advisory is interesting because it is one of first instances of an attempt to provide guidance to foreign banks in respect of the [...]

Oxymonster sentenced to 20 years for money laundering and dark net drug sales

A foreign national from France, known on the dark net as OxyMonster, was sentenced to 20 years jail in the US for selling drugs such as fentanyl, online, and laundering the proceeds of crime. Gal Vallerius, 36, pleaded guilty to drug distribution and money laundering in Miami in June for selling cocaine, methamphetamine, fentanyl, oxycodone and [...]

ICOs & tokens increasingly attracting FBI criminal attention

According to this interview with FBI’s Financial Crimes Section Chief on CNBC, the FBI is seeing an increase in the number of complaints and cases opened involving digital currencies and crime. In particular, the FBI said that it is mostly ICOs and associated investment fraud schemes involving Bitcoin that are on the raise for investigations [...]