Three cybercriminals were busted after Bulgarian authorities seized $3 million in crypto

November 27, 2018
Chris Wheal

In another major bust involving fraudulent schemes with crypto, following months of investigation, Bulgarian authorities seized $3 million of cryptocurrency assets and arrested three cybercriminals. Additionally, the suspects were also charged for a legion of other digital crimes. The authorities were able to seize a car bought with crypto funds, several computers, flash drives and hardware devices. Investigators have also discovered several passwords and private keys associated with crypto exchanges and wallet providers.

cybercriminal

The bust follows the Bulgarian Specialized Prosecutor’s Office recent action to curb crypto-related fraud. According to CCN report, the Bulgarian Specialized Prosecutor’s Office joined an international operation to neutralize a cryptocurrency fraud scheme involving OneCoin. The efforts of the operation later revealed the illegal exchange of Bulgarian passports for bitcoin, which led to the arrest of several officials. It is uncertain what activity caused the alleged cybercriminals to obtain the cryptocurrency. However, authorities believe the accused used “innovative mechanisms, specialist software, and advanced knowledge in the area of cryptocurrency” to acquire the illegal funds.

The government and regulators are actively seeking ways to combat money laundering, tax evasion, and terrorism financing worldwide. As of now, U.S. government and law enforcement agencies have already spent $5.7 million on hiring contractors to find and investigate cryptocurrency fraud. The Bulgarian government also plans to join the worldwide policy and implement AML (Anti-Money Laundering) and KYC (Know Your Customer) checks as a standardized process to track crypto movements and tie them to individual identities for further investigation and prosecution.

Post written by Chris Wheal
Chris Wheal is editor of OpenLedger's news and features service. An award-wining business journalists himself, he runs a team of freelance journalists from across the UK and north America.

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