BTC-e founder pleads guilty to laundering stolen Bitcoin

BTC-e Money Laundering Scheme Revealed

Alexander Vinnik, co-founder of the now-defunct crypto exchange BTC-e, has pled guilty to conspiring to launder money in a significant development in a long-standing legal case. The U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) highlighted that BTC-e processed over $9 billion in transactions under Vinnik’s leadership from 2011 to 2017, serving as a platform for criminal activities.

Unveiling BTC-e’s Role in Illegal Activities

During their investigation, the DoJ found that BTC-e facilitated the laundering of funds obtained through various illegal means without complying with financial regulations like FinCEN registration and AML/KYC protocols. Vinnik’s involvement in establishing shell companies and accounts worldwide to transfer illicit funds through BTC-e resulted in criminal losses of at least $121 million.

BTC-e Ties to Mt. Gox Hack Exposed

A significant turning point in the case was the report by WizSecurity revealing BTC-e’s involvement in the Mt. Gox hack. Collaborating with hackers, Vinnik and BTC-e laundered stolen Bitcoins through the exchange, implicating them in the illicit activity. The indictment of Belarusian Aliaksandr Klimenka alongside Vinnik shed light on the extensive illicit financial operations conducted through BTC-e’s servers in the U.S.

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