Dutch Authorities Seized Over $360 Million in Money and Crypto in 2020

In short

  • In 2020 Dutch authorities seized greater than €300 million in money and cryptocurrency.
  • Greater than €8 million was seized in Bitcoin and different cryptocurrencies, a substantial improve on 2019.

Final yr, Dutch authorities seized about €303 million ($367 million) value of money and cryptocurrency in legal instances, the Netherlands Public Prosecutors Service (OM) mentioned in an announcement final week.

That is a substantial improve on 2019, when a complete of €258.1 million ($312.3 million) in money and crypto was confiscated.

Of the €303 million seized in 2020, about €8.2 million ($9.9 million) was in Bitcoin and different cryptocurrencies—a big improve from the earlier yr, when authorities seized €1.1 million ($1.3 million) value of cryptocurrency.

In keeping with nationwide cash laundering prosecutor Anita van Dis, that is partly attributable to the truth that Dutch regulation enforcement seized quite a few wallets belonging to so-called crypto whales—addresses which have giant quantities of crypto saved in them.

In October 2020 the OM introduced the seizure of over 2,500 BTC (then value round $33 million) in a legal case involving a pair from Hilversum, who had been accused of laundering practically $19 million and had been convicted on cash laundering fees.

“We’re seeing a pointy improve in sure varieties of crime involving the misuse of crypto cash,” mentioned van Dis.

Cryptocurrencies resembling Bitcoin are often related to illicit exercise and cash laundering; nonetheless, the above numbers recommend that money remains to be the popular medium for legal transactions, with some €184 million ($222.5 million) seized on the request of different nations.

Quick conversion to fiat

Not like different nations that maintain seized crypto till a court docket choice, the Dutch Public Prosecutors Service instantly converts it into Euros. The company takes the same method in the direction of different fiat currencies like {dollars} or kilos.

“We don’t wish to give the impression that we’re speculating with legal belongings”, Reiner Bredenood, cryptocurrency coverage advisor for OM, informed NLTimes.

Nations just like the US and the UK observe public gross sales of seized cryptocurrencies. Since 2014, the US alone has auctioned off 185,230 BTC, or extra that $9.7 billion in in the present day’s costs.

In November 2020, the US Division of Justice introduced the seizure of a further $1 billion value of Bitcoin linked to the now-defunct darknet market Silk Street, suing for the forfeiture of the funds.

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