Europol with Interpol and the Basel Institute on Governance launched a group that will investigate and pursue money laundering criminals using digital currencies such as BitCoin.
Europol Will Investigate BitCoin Laundering Criminals
Interpol and Europol have created a working group with the Basel Insitute on Governance that will deal with crypto currency laundering criminals. The formation of the unit was reported last week on the official site of Europol.
By their plans and strategies, the international police organizations have devised a set of goals that they will pursue in the digital currency crimes. The primary aims include:
- The gathering, analysis and exchange of surveillance information regarding the use of digital currencies as a means of money laundering. Actions include investigation and recovery of crime proceeds in such form.
- The organization of annual meetings and workshops for the representatives of the law respective law enforcement agencies and interested institutions.
- The creation of a network of experts in the field that can establish best practices and provide assistance to both the group and all interested outside entities.
Europol’s new group is the next addition to the growing presence of the European Union in the crypto currency market. The creation of the unit is done to regulate the new domain and to allow for a safer use of the crypto currencies that are becoming popular among both consumers and businesses. Some companies have started to offer and accept BitCoin payment in the EU and around the world and the fact that the technology allows for stealth money laundering has brought concerns to experts from a variety of fields.
Terrorists have reportedly been using the BitCoin currency to finance their criminal activity and as such, the group can operate in anti-terrorism settings.
The official press release contains the following excerpt that outlines the needs of such a group:
„There is a clear consensus that digital currencies pose a money laundering and terrorism financing threat. A small number of cases have already shown Law Enforcement Agencies that money laundering and terrorism financing can easily take place inside virtual environments, offering high levels of anonymity and low levels of detection removing many of the risks associated with real-world money laundering and terrorism financing activities.“
For more information, you can view the message on Europol’s site.