Bitcoin fraud suspect arrested in Greece

  • Bitcoin fraud suspect arrested in Greece

Bitcoin fraud suspect arrested in Greece

One of the long running major bitcoin exchanges - BTC-e.com - went offline on July 25 2017. During that entire time, the people behind the company have been completely anonymous.

According to the US Justice Department, Vinnik, as an operator of the BTC-e exchange has helped launder through Bitcoin operations funds from criminal activities, including drug trafficking and computer hacking.

Earlier today, Finance Magnates covered the arrest of Mr. Vinnik, who was apprehended on suspicion of running a $4 billion money laundering operation related to illicit business activities with Bitcoin.

The arrest warrant was issued by the U.S. Ministry of Justice, and reports suggest the United States are looking to extradite Alexander.

An internationally sought "mastermind" of a crime organization has been arrested. Greek police said he had been directing a criminal organization that owns, operates and manages "one of the largest cybercrime websites in the world".

With Vinnik's extradition, the USA investigation will go into full swing.

His arrest is the latest in a series of US operations against Russian cyber criminals in Europe.

At this time, it is unknown whether the site's assets are still in place or whether legitimate users of the site will be out their money.

The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), working in coordination with the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Northern District of California, assessed a $110,003,314 civil money penalty today against Canton Business Corporation (BTC-e) for willfully violating U.S. anti-money laundering (AML) laws. Ever since his arrest, the website has been down citing "Technical Reasons". A Tuesday tweet stated that the site had been taken down for "unscheduled ongoing maintenance". Sorry for the inconvenience. BTC-e user funds may be lost.

An unsealed DOJ indictment fingers Vinnik as the operator of one of the Bitcoin wallet used in laundering funds stolen from the Mt. Gox cryptocurrency exchange platform. WizSec came out of a two-year long hiatus from Twitter to make the announcement, stating that "Vinnik is our chief suspect for involvement in the MtGox theft..." This gave the hacker access to a sizable number of bitcoins immediately, but also were able to spend the incoming trickle of bitcoins deposited to any of the addresses contained. WizSec has traced down Alexander Vinnick as the main money launderer behind the Mt. Gox heist and as WME, not the hacker.

Bitcoin was the first digital currency to successfully use cryptography to keep transactions secure and pseudonymous, making conventional financial regulation hard.

Vinnik has denied all accusations against him in a Greek court of law. Or will other countries try and lay their claim to prosecute?