Police in Brazil raided six cryptocurrency exchanges
Brazil’s police and tax officials have raided six local cryptocurrency exchanges as part of a large investigation. They suspect the platforms may be involved in a huge multinational money laundering and criminal enterprise.
The Special Department of Federal Revenue of Brazil (known locally as the Receita Federal, or the federal revenue service agency) and the Federal Police Force announced in a joint statement that the raids were conducted as part of “Operation Colossus.”
A single “criminal enterprise” is believed to be responsible for the laundering of around $380 million in illicit funds via domestic crypto trading platforms.
They published: Before acquiring “cryptoassets,” the group reportedly used a network of “shell businesses” and “passed monies via transit accounts.”
They said the money consisted of “embezzled monies, earnings from drug trafficking, money laundering, and proceeds from numerous crimes against the national financial system.”
A total of 158 policemen were deployed to addresses in São Paulo, Rio de Janeiro, Bahia, and Santa Catarina.
Metropoles stated that the Criminal Court of So Paulo had issued 101 court orders, “two arrest warrants,” and 37 search and seizure warrants in relation to the case.
Six of these warrants were issued to cryptocurrency exchanges, but the identities of the trading sites remain unknown. Four other financial institutions with Central Bank-issued licences to operate in the foreign exchange market and three accounting companies have also been searched.
The media site stated that the ring’s operators were reportedly “responsible for acquiring enormous quantities of cryptoassets overseas, in nations like as the United States, Singapore, and Hong Kong,” before selling the tokens on the illegal Brazilian market.
The authorities said that they suspected the criminal network may have been operational for up to four years before Operation Colossus was launched.
The development occurs as the discussion of crypto legislation in Brazil intensifies, with officials striving for more control over the industry.
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