TL;DR: In order “to maximize disruption of their financial dealings,” the United States Treasury office published a dozen Chinese nationals’ cryptocurrency addresses, one of which was associated with Litecoin while the rest were BTC. They’re accused of participating in a large, international synthetic opioid ring, and financial law enforcement is using the Kingpin Act to effectively doxx individuals believed to be associated.
US Treasury Uses Kingpin Act to Doxx Chinese Nationals
U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and Treasury’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) detailed efforts to impede, slow what they’re characterizing as an international synthetic opioid ring involving Chinese nationals. In doing so, the agencies are effectively blacklisting a dozen cryptocurrency addresses associated with accused perpetrators.
A Treasury official called them “kingpins,” explaining at least three individuals “designated today run an international drug trafficking operation that manufactures and sells lethal narcotics, directly contributing to the crisis of opioid addiction, overdoses, and death in the United States.” They “shipped hundreds of packages of synthetic opioids to the U.S., targeting customers through online advertising and sales.”
Using various statutes and laws at their disposal, Treasury “issued an advisory to alert financial institutions to financial schemes related to the trafficking of fentanyl and other synthetic opioids. Information in the advisory will assist them in detecting and reporting related criminal activity.” The Bank Secrecy Act is singled out as being particularly helpful in this regard, compelling financial institutions to be “on alert to red flags and other indicators of the complex schemes fentanyl traffickers are employing so that financial institutions can report and share relevant information with law enforcement, and ultimately help save lives,” another official claimed.
Some of the alleged participants were apparently “known to use digital currency (bitcoin), and OFAC is also identifying bitcoin addresses associated” under the Kingpin Act, insisting at least one person “laundered [their] drug proceeds in part by using digital currency such as bitcoin, transmitted drug proceeds into and out of bank accounts in China and Hong Kong, and bypassed currency restrictions and reporting requirements.” As a result, “all property and interests in property of these individuals and entities that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC.”
DISCLOSURE: The author holds cryptocurrency as part of his financial portfolio, including BCH.
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