BEFORE YOU GO...
Check how Shufti Pro can verify your customers within secondsRequest Demo
The FBI and the Dutch Financial Intelligence and Investigation Service have a crackdown on virtual assets service providers and seized the Sinbad crypto mixer due to ties with the North Korean government.
The US sanctioned the Sinbad crypto mixer website on Wednesday, stating that money launderers use it as a tool and is linked with the North Korean government. Crypto mixers assist hackers in disguising the transactions and exchanging illicitly gained virtual assets into fiat currency. The Treasury Department stated in a statement that Sinbad was involved in millions of dollars worth of virtual currency from heists conducted by North Korean hackers, the Lazarus Group. These heists included the hundreds of millions of dollars worth of Axie Infinity and Horizon Bridge heists. The US Treasury Department stated, “Mixing services that enable criminal actors, such as the Lazarus Group, to launder stolen assets will face serious consequences. While we encourage responsible innovation in the digital asset ecosystem, we will not hesitate to take action against illicit actors.”
Sinbad have been contacted by authorities via email and have declined to provide any comment or response to these allegations so far. Currently, the website shows the message from the FBI that this service is temporarily seized by the coordination with Netherlands and Finland regulatory agencies. The Treasury Department also stated that, amongst other crimes, fraudsters employ Sinbad to mask transactions connected to narcotics trafficking, sanction evasion, and the acquisition of materials encouraging child sexual abuse. The Seizure message on the Sinbad website states, “This service has been seized as part of a coordinated law-enforcement action between the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Financial Intelligence and Investigation Service (FIOD), and the National Bureau of Investigation taken against the Sinbad.io cryptocurrency mixing service. The Federal Bureau of Investigation has seized the service by a seizure warrant under 18 U.S.C. 981 and 982 as part of a coordinated international law-enforcement operation.”
Previously, the US also charged another crypto-mixing platform to Blender.io, providing service to the Lazarus Group. Most crypto experts claimed that Sinbad was the successor of Blender and the solution is not halting crypto firms. The US should enforce rigid regulations in digital transactions to combat money laundering and secure the country’s economy. The Treasury Department added that Sinbad and other components of the digital asset ecosystem pose challenges for the government and investors to build their trust in cryptocurrency exchanges.