US crypto exchange Bitzlato accused of money laundering

The US administration has accused Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange Bitzlato of money laundering.

In the statement made by the US Department of Justice, it was reported that the Russian-born Chief Executive of the Hong Kong-registered cryptocurrency exchange Bitzlato, Anatoly Legkodymov, was accused of transferring illegal funds and failed to meet the US regulatory measures, including money laundering measure.

In the statement, it was stated that Legkodymov was detained in Miami last night and will be tried in Florida Southern District Court today.

Pointing out that Bitzlato is a very valuable financial resource for Hydra, which is known as the world’s largest and longest-running “darknet market”, used for narcotics, stolen financial information, fake identity documents and money laundering services, the statement said that Hydra users can directly interact with Bitzlato. or through middlemen, it was recorded that it had processed more than $700 million in cryptocurrencies until Hydra was shut down in April 2022 by US and German authorities.

In the statement, it was reported that Bitzlato also earned more than $ 15 million from ransomware raids.

In addition, the US Treasury Department said in a statement that Bitzlato has a “primary money laundering concern” in connection with Russian illegal financing.

In this context, the US Treasury Department’s Financial Enforcement Enforcement Unit (FinCEN) has banned financial institutions from reasonable fund transfers involving Bitzlato.

“A precious blow has been dealt to the crypto-crime ecosystem”

US Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, on the other hand, said at the press conference held for the bet that a valuable blow was dealt to the crypto crime ecosystem.

Emphasizing that they will use all means at their disposal against the “darknet”, also known as the dark internet, and the misdemeanor of cryptocurrency, Monaco said, “We are taking steps to address the crisis of faith in the cryptocurrency markets, where criminals and fraudsters are trying to operate beyond the reach of security forces.” said.

Wally Adeyemo, the US Deputy Secretary of the Treasury, also noted that Bitzlato has streamlined processes for Russia-contacted ransomware clusters many times over.

Noting that Bitzlato is the module of a wider ecosystem of cyber bugs that are allowed to operate in Russia with impunity, Adeyemo said, “Bitzlato, due to his valuable operations in Russia and Russian illegal finance, and his contact with them, protect the national security of the United States, the United States and other countries. It threatens the integrity of international finance and businesses and institutions around the world.” he said.