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Australia’s ‘E-Crime Squad’ Arrests Man Flouting Unregistered Crypto Exchange

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  • Australian Detectives known as the ‘E-Crime Squad’ have arrested a man for providing unregistered cryptocurrency services.
  • Authorities charged the man for breaking anti-money laundering and counter-terrorism financing laws.
  • The E-Crime Squad seized sizable amounts of cash, forged documents, and even a crypto ATM machine.

Police in southeastern Australia arrested a 38-year old man on Tuesday for providing “unregistered cryptocurrency transactions.” Detectives known as the ‘E-Crime Squad’ arrested the man in Cairnlea and are holding him for questioning.

Victoria police are working in conjunction with AUSTRAC, Australia’s financial intelligence agency and watchdog.

The arrest is reportedly one of the first-ever E-Crime Squad investigations | Source: Twitter

The arrest is reportedly one of the first major investigations related to cryptocurrency crime conducted by the E-Crime squad.

Victoria Man Sells Crypto Despite Cease & Desist Notice

The unknown man is under investigation for breaching two of Australia’s commonwealth acts:

  • Section 76A(5) of the Anti-Money Laundering and Counter-Terrorism Financing Act of 2006;
  • Section 400.9 of the Criminal Code Act of 1995

Per the former, the Cairnlea man continued providing digital currency exchange (DCE) even after AUSTRAC had served him with a cease and desist notice back in November of 2018.

E-Crime Squad Seizes Cash, Forged Documents & ATM Machine

Police seized a sizable amount of cash, forged documents and even a cryptocurrency ATM machine at a local shopping center. The ATM in nearby Braybrook tipped off authorities due to several scam reports.

AUSTRAC’s mandate to obligate crypto exchanges into registration came first into effect in April 2018.

Meanwhile, cryptocurrency crime is on the rise in Australia. In September, authorities arrested a 21-year-old mother for a multimillion-dollar crypto fraud.

Last month, Australian police fortuitously seized an illegal gun runner’s Bitcoin which netted them a staggering 2000% profit.

This article was edited by Samburaj Das.

Last modified: November 12, 2019 11:22 UTC