Cybercriminals’ crypto platform ChipMixer seized in international operation

International authorities have cracked down on the cryptocurrency platform ChipMixer, alleging it helped obscure the digital money trail for online drug dealers, Russian military hackers and North Korean cybercriminals, Europe’s Europol police agency and the U.S. Department of Justice said on Wednesday.
The site – which authorities say laundered more than $3 billion worth of cryptocurrency – was offline on Wednesday, replaced by a banner which read, “THIS WEBSITE HAS BEEN SEIZED” and displaying the logos of German, American, Swiss and Polish law enforcement organizations.
The Justice Department said it had charged Vietnamese national Minh Quoc Nguyen, 49, with money laundering and identity theft in connection with the platform’s operation. In its indictment, the department claimed that Nguyen openly flouted financial regulations and at one point told users of a Bitcoin forum that “‘Money laundering’ is a crime made-up by governments that spy on their citizens.”
In an email, the Justice Department said Nguyen was not in custody. Reuters was not immediately able to determine his current whereabouts; attempts to reach him by email were not immediately successful. A message sent to ChipMixer’s publicly posted email address was not immediately returned.

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