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Australian investigative authorities have arrested a man on charges of unregistered digital transaction of cryptocurrency. The Electronic crime squad of Australia made the arrest on 12th November in Cairnlea, as the 38-year-old man was arrested and escorted from his residence in the district. The investigation also led to a seizure of a cryptocurrency ATM associated with the case.
The arrested man was taken into custody where he is currently held. The authorities have been investigating the issue further and questioning him regarding the violations of to two commonwealth laws surrounding illicit cryptocurrency transactions.
The first offence was violation of Section 76A (5), which is related to money laundering and terrorism funding. The act, established in 2006, states that any person who provides a registrable Digital Currency Exchange service, while not being registered by the authority shall be immediately ceased following notice of AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre).
The second offence was the violation of Section 400.9 of 1995 of the Criminal Code Act. The act deals with suspicions of a property being affiliated or related to any criminal activity. The unregistered transaction of cryptocurrency was concerning for the electronic crime squad to make the arrest under the basis of suspicion of it being part of an illicit activity.
During the warrant search, police authorities were able to gather substantial amount of evidence of potentially illegal crypto activity. The warrant search was conducted just after 7am and law enforcement agencies were able to collect large quantities of cash and documents of false identification.
Crypto ATM in the Center of the Investigation
Following the arrest of the suspect, law enforcement officers also had to seize a crypto ATM as part of the investigation. The machine was located at a shopping center in the Australian suburb of Braybrook.
The investigation initially began in June of this year. AUSTRAC drafted a report for the intelligence analyzing activities of scam linked with the crypto ATM located in the suburb. This led to the investigative authorities conducting examinations over a series of digital transactions made through that machine since June.
Police authorities of Victoria collaborated with AUSTRAC for this investigation. The two forces worked together tracing the cryptocurrency transactions and locating the sources of those electronic exchanges. This is one of the first investigative cases for the electronic crime squad that is related to the transactions of cryptocurrency.
David Hawkins, National Manager Intelligence Operations presently acting for AUSTRAC reported after the investigation concluded that the proceedings of the case have demonstrated the vital need for cooperation between the two forces of AUSTRAC and law enforcement partners to stop crimes related to finance.