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How can we keep crime out of cryptocurrencies?


Europol recently released the fifth edition of its “Internet Organised Crime Threat Assessment”. The Assessment makes a statement that shouldn’t come as a surprise; criminals continue to use cryptocurrencies to facilitate illicit transactions online. The question is, despite being aware of this threat for some time, are we now any better equipped to tackle it?

Is the private sector any better equipped? It would seem not. An article last week by Financial News revealed that big banks employ more chefs than experts in cryptocurrencies. Of course, this applies more widely across functions but it’s a strong indication that compliance functions are lacking expertise.

What is the average salary of a bodyguard? 

The first, by the OCCRP reveals how three of President Vladimir Putin’s former bodyguards; Viktor Zolotov, Oleg Klimentiev, and Alexei Dyumin have all become seriously wealthy individuals. All of them now occupy prominent political functions as well as some of the most desirable properties in Russia.

The second case, reported by The New York Times, involves the former bodyguard of Hugo Chavez, Alejandro Andrade. Andrade rose from humble bodyguard to become Venezuela’s National Treasurer between 2007-2010, siphoning off billions of dollars of state funds in the process. Now living in Florida, he has been charged by US authorities with taking bribes worth over $1bn and for facilitating a money laundering scheme. Both of these stories show the perks afforded to those who have unquestioning loyalty to autocratic regimes. And both show businesses that the closest associates of some the highest ranking PEPs can become just as risky to deal with as those they protect.

The post was written with support of our partner – Comply Advantage.

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