Russian proprietor of cryptocurrency alternate Bitzlato arrested in Miami | Cryptocurrencies

Russian proprietor of cryptocurrency alternate Bitzlato arrested in Miami | Cryptocurrencies

A Russian nationwide who based a cryptocurrency alternate that the justice division says grew to become a haven for the proceeds of felony exercise has been arrested, federal officers mentioned on Wednesday.
Anatoly Legkodymov, who lives in China, was arrested on Tuesday evening in Miami and was due in courtroom on a cost of conducting an unlicensed money-transmitting enterprise.
Prosecutors allege that Legkodymov’s cryptocurrency alternate, Bitzlato Ltd, of which he served as majority proprietor, didn’t implement required anti-money laundering safeguards and required solely minimal identification from its customers, even letting them provide info belonging to “straw man registrants”, folks serving as cowl for the customers.
“The outcome was that Bitzlato grew to become a secure haven for criminals, like drug sellers and ransomware teams,” mentioned Breon Peace, the US lawyer in Brooklyn, the place the case was filed. “They knew that when the police traced their funds to Bitzlato, Bitzlato wouldn’t have the ability to flip over its customers’ true identities.”
The corporate, registered in Hong Kong, was based in 2016 and operates globally.
The justice division mentioned Bitzlato, both immediately or by its intermediaries, carried out greater than $700m in cryptocurrency exchanges with customers of Hydra Market, a darknet market for medication, pretend identifications and different unlawful merchandise. The justice division seized that market final yr and shut it down.
“Working offshore or transferring your servers out of the continental US won’t defend you,” deputy lawyer normal Lisa Monaco mentioned at a Wednesday information convention. “And whether or not you break our legal guidelines from China or Europe, or abuse our monetary system from a tropical island, you’ll be able to anticipate to reply to your crimes inside a United States courtroom.”
Monaco’s point out of a tropical island appeared to be an obvious reference to the arrest final month within the Bahamas of Sam Bankman-Fried, the previous CEO of failed cryptocurrency agency FTX.
Legkodymov, 40, was in custody on Wednesday, and it was unclear if he had a lawyer who may touch upon his behalf.
The treasury division labored with French authorities to establish the alleged felony actions by Bitzlato, which US officers mentioned was an indication of the worldwide cooperation to purge unhealthy actors from cryptocurrency markets.

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