Authorities dismantle crypto trade Bitzlato, allege it was cybercrime “haven”

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Federal authorities on Wednesday arrested the founding father of Bitzlato, a cryptocurrency trade they mentioned has been a monetary haven for Russia-aligned criminals engaged in ransomware and illicit drug gross sales on the darkish net.

Anatoly Legkodymov, a 40-year-old Russian nationwide residing in Shenzhen, China, was arrested on Wednesday in Miami, US prosecutors mentioned. The prosecutors alleged that on Legkodymov’s watch, Bitzlato processed roughly $4.58 billion value of cryptocurrency transactions and {that a} “substantial portion of these transactions represent the proceeds of crime, in addition to funds supposed to be used in prison transactions.” Bitzlato is called a digital asset service supplier (VASP).

Ransomware and cybercrime bazaars—no questions requested

The US Justice Division took motion together with the US Treasury Division’s Monetary Crimes Enforcement Community (FinCEN), which enforces legal guidelines prohibiting home and worldwide cash laundering, terrorist financing, and different monetary crimes. A centerpiece of the FinCEN agenda is implementing sanctions in opposition to Russian entities, together with ransomware teams affiliated with that nation.

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