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Moscow Authorities Detain A Brit For Consulting North Korea On Crypto

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Moscow Authorities Detain A Brit For Consulting North Korea On Crypto
Moscow Authorities Detain A Brit For Consulting North Korea On Crypto

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  • WhatIn a new development, the Moscow Bureau of Interpol arrested and detained a British citizen Christopher Emms for conspiracy.
  • Why – This was after the US authorities put the British citizen on Interpol’s wanted list.
  • What Next – North Korea remains notorious for illicit crypto activities.

Notably, the Lazarus group is one of its arms for funding weapon development through crypto thefts. Even though some countries, such as the US, placed sanctions on North Korean crypto transactions, its agents always find a way to thwart them. 

Emms Assisted North Korea To Violate US Sanctions On Crypto

On February 21, a local news outlet reported the arrest and detention of Christopher Emms, a British citizen, in Moscow. The Brit allegedly consulted with North Korea to violate US sanctions on crypto.

According to the report, the Moscow Bureau of Interpol detained the Brit in a hostel where he lodged. This was after receiving a ‘Red Notice’ from the US authorities. Emms was trying to hide from the International wanted list by heading to Moscow, Russia. He thought that with prevailing sanctions on Russian and other circumstances of the NWO, they would not hand him over to the US authorities.

The United States Department of Justice (DoJ) charged Emms and two others for assisting North Korea in violating US sanctions in April 2022. They explained how North Korea could launder money using crypto and blockchain services. The other parties in the case are Alejandro Cao de Benos and American Virgil Griffith.

The DoJ accused Emms and others of organizing the Pyongyang Blockchain and Cryptocurrency Conference to help the DPRK in North Korea. Their actions aided North Korea in avoiding sanctions as it violated the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA). 

Emms and Cao De Benos had been at large following their actions in 2019. However, the events seem different for Griffith as the Federal Bureau of Investigation arrested him in Nov 2021. The American acknowledged the wrong and received 63 months imprisonment with a $100,000 fine.

Notably, Saudi Arabian authorities had overruled the US extradition request on Emms in September 2022. It banned the Brit’s travel for eight months but later released him, stating that the case lacked a legal basis. Then the founder of Due Process International, Radha Stirling, also supported the US has no substantial evidence against Emms.

After lifting his ban, Emms ran to Russia, thinking he was safe. Fortunately, Russian authorities decided to assist the US and capture the conspirator. However, after his arrest, Emms could get 20 years imprisonment for violating the IEEPA rules.

American Watchdogs Are More Aggressive on Digital Asset Regulations Now

Following the recent implosion of the FTX crypto exchange and some shocking details surrounding its bankruptcy proceeding, the US regulators are more focused on their measures and enforcement actions.

This month,  the New York Department of Financial Services (NYDFS) gave a stop order mandate to Paxos Trust Company on minting new Binance USD coins. A report from The Wall Street Journal on February 12 revealed the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) plans to sue Paxos concerning its operation in issuing BUSD stablecoin. Recently, the firm stopped minting the coin, and even Binance has already found an alternative in True USD (TUSD)

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