Bitzlato Co-Founder Guilty Plea in US – Russian Crypto Case

Crypto Enforcement | Dec 13, 2023

Bitzlato Co-Founder Pleads Guilty to Moving Illicit Money

As reported by Reuters, a Russian national, Anatoly Legkodymov, the co-founder of Hong Kong registered virtual cryptocurrency exchange Bitzlato, has pleaded guilty to charges related to operating a money transmitting business that facilitated the movement of illicit funds.

  • Anatoly Legkodymov, 41 years old, pled guilty to a criminal charge in the U.S. on Wednesday, the individual consented to relinquish $23 million in an agreement with federal prosecutors, following the handling of $700 million in unlawful
    funds.

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  • Since his arrest in Miami on January 17, Legkodymov has been detained at the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn.  He faces up to 5 years in prison.

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  • The exchange was a primary facilitator for transactions in the dark market, indicating a lack of proper controls over illlegal money movements.
  • According to U.S. authorities, Legkodymov operator of Bitzlato from Shenzhen, a major city in China.
  • U.S. officials reported that Binance was one of the principal counterparties of Bitzlato.

Why It’s Important

As the crypto crackdown continues, this case serves as another caution to investors and users of cryptocurrency exchanges, emphasizing the need for due diligence and awareness of the risks involved in digital asset transactions.

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