Police in C.China’s Hunan crack money laundering case via cryptocurrency, 40 billion yuan involved
Published: Sep 27, 2022 12:31 PM Updated: Sep 27, 2022 12:20 PM
Bitcoin, a type of cryptocurrency Illustration: VCG

Bitcoin, a type of cryptocurrency Illustration: VCG

The public security department of Hengyang county under Hengyang city, Central China's Hunan Province announced recently that a 40-billion-yuan (($5.58 billion) money laundering case involving cryptocurrency had been cracked, which was linked to over 300 telecom fraud schemes, the National Business Daily reported on Tuesday.

The operation was one of nine successes during a public security campaign initiated by local authorities, capturing 93 criminals across five provinces since the middle of September, 2021.

From 2018, a criminal suspect surnamed Hong, head of the criminal group, began transferring illicit funds generated by gambling and fraud into cryptocurrency, which was then converted to US dollars and sent to other receivers via domestic and overseas companies, authorities reported.

China has been combatting against money laundering crimes related to cryptocurrency. The People's Bank of China, the central bank, said on Monday that China will continue to crack down domestic trade and speculation of cryptocurrency, with the percentage of bitcoin trading in China having fallen sharply. A total of 25,000 illegal fundraising cases were registered and cracked in the last five years, the central bank noted.

Pushed by deepening regulation campaign targeting telecom and cyber fraud, the money laundering cases via traditional transaction approaches such as using the third-party payment platform and business account have become increasingly rare. While the number of cryptocurrency related money laundering cases has risen, the majority of the cases are using the USDT, also known as the Tether, an official from China's Ministry of Public Security (MPS) said in April this year.

The MPS also detailed in January 2022 that the regulator had cracked 259 money laundering cases using illegal cryptocurrency valued about 11 billion yuan.

Global Times