Friday, February 23, 2024

USSS Managed To Seize Over $102M In Crypto Since 2015: Report

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USSS managed to seize over $102 million in crypto since 2015 according to the Director of the Agency which tracked illicit transactions on the blockcahin network and cracked down on money laundering cases so let’s read more today in our latest cryptocurrency news today.

The United States Secret Service USSS managed to seize over $102 million in crypto during the investigation into criminal and fraud cases in 2015 according to David Smith who is the Assistant Director of Investigations. Smith leads the global investigative wing with 161 offices and over 3000 employees. To track the illicit currency transactions and crackdown on them, the US Secret Service agents and analysts monitor the flow of BTC and other digital assets on different blockcahin networks. In 254 crypto-related cases were investigated by the agency in the same time frame, the Secret Service officer noted:

“When you follow a digital currency wallet, it’s no different than an email address that has some correlating identifiers… And once a person and another person make a transaction, and that gets into the blockchain, we have the ability to follow that email address or wallet address, if you will, and trace it through the blockchain.”

In a case that involved 900 US citizens as victims, Smith’s team of investigators worked with the Romanian police to deconstruct the fraud and it was a case of some non-existent luxury items being sold on auction and the retail sites via fake ads.  The fake invoices in the name of reputable companies were delivered to the customers and the moeny recieved from the victims was converted into digital assets. It showed how old-fashioned ways are using crypto to hide away the money:

 “One of the things about cryptocurrency is it moves money at a faster pace than the traditional format… What criminals want to do is sort of muddy the waters and make efforts to obfuscate their activities. What we want to do is to track that as quickly as we can, aggressively as we can, in a linear fashion.”

seized funds

The popular modus operandi of crypto criminals is to transfer the stolen BTC or another crypto into stablecoins to avoid the market volatility. In a case reported in 2020, the USSS executed a seizure warrant for 482 BTC and 1.7 million USDT for an alleged kingpin of a Ponzi scheme and according to the details, the scheme called Fanan Bund recieved investments from investors. The fund administrator claimed that the scheme failed and that he will have to return 557 BTC and 1.73 million USDT that he got from the investors. The victims approached the USSS and said that the administrator hadn’t returned the investmetns instead he took out 100 BTC from the fund for personal use.

The agency was able to locate 482 BTC and 1,721,868 USDT in one crypto account linked to the Banana Fund administrator and executed a seizure warrant for the recovered digital coins.

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