United States Department of Homeland Security (ICE)accused two Canadian brothers and Payza online payment service, to have illegally trafficked and laundered money related to cryptocurrency transactions.
Transmitters are required to register with federal and state agencies
The Payza company is a payment processor using Bitcoin and other crypto-currencies for daily settlement operations whereas, the two guilty men are Firoz Patel (43) and Ferhan Patel (37), two brothers residing in Montreal, Quebec. Payza would have served more than $ 250 million in proceeds from criminal activities , including a Ponzi scheme. US lawyer Jessie K. Liu and ICE Special Agent Patrick J. Lechleitner disclosed this information in a press release issued by ICE.
Attorney Liu of the United States said :
The arrest and indictments demonstrate that we will invariably enforce laws designed to protect the American consumer.
Businesses trading money must be federally registered and licensed in most states and jurisdictions, including the District of Columbia. Consumers should also be wary of those who do not comply with these laws as they may be used as cover for other illegal activities.
Illegal activities from 2012 to today
It seems that the two Patel brothers are accused of conspiracy. They allegedly operated an unlicensed money transfer company and at the same time violated the requirements of the anti-money laundering program. The charges against them are punishable by a maximum sentence of 25 years each. Payza and its parent company, MH Pillars Ltd,they would have illegally transmitted the money.
The brothers and Payza allegedly participated in criminal activities from March 2012 until today. Through Payza, the Patel brothers knowingly transferred funds into cryptocurrency linked to illegal activities, according to the ICE agency.
The two brothers continued their illegal activities, even after receiving the letters of cessation and withdrawal
ICE said during the press release:
Although they received several letters of cessation and withdrawal from the States and a consultant told them that the operation of a business transfer funds unlicensed, was considered a crime, Firoz and Ferhan Patel, however, continued their illegal activities, says the indictment
Other conspirators have reportedly been involved in the transfer of more than $ 250 million dollars, across the United States and elsewhere, according to the indictment.
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In addition, Payza’s customers have conspired to several types of pyramid schemes. The Patel would have opened bank accounts in the United States to launder their illegal products. The ICE initially confiscated US $ 10 million although the investigation is still ongoing. In recent times, several cases of illegal money smuggling and money laundering crimes have been flowing into America.
Recall that in February the US SuperBowl has refused the dissemination of advertising to promote a cryptocurrency that meets all the requirements of security and compliance with financial regulations including the fight against money laundering.
What do you think of the ICE report accusing Payza and the two brothers of money laundering and illegal money transmission? React in the comments below.