The Australian authorities have arrested a man in Sydney for allegedly trying to convert $4.3 million in cash into bitcoin through a criminal syndicate.
According to a report, the man was nabbed by the country’s security forces on Monday after suspiciously entering a Sydney suburb. He arrested with millions of dollars in cash and some electronic devices.
The police noted that the man allegedly attempted to convert the cash into cryptocurrency using a local criminal syndicate that poses as “money-launderers for hire.”
Recall that earlier Yi Zhong a Sydney man was also arrested by the New South Wales Police for allegedly trying to convert cash into digital currency using similar “money-launderers for hire.”
Australian unit in charge of cybercrime Strike Force Curns has decried the growing amount of crypto-related in the country. The unit was unveiled in October 2020 to investigate money-laundering-related crimes.
Cybercrime Squad Commander Detective Superintendent Matt Craft disclosed that this was the first phase of arrests. The unit was gearing up to make more arrests over the next few weeks as the evidence obtained is being collated and assessed.
Regulator warns consumers over crypto investment risks
Meanwhile, Sweden’s Financial Supervisory Authority (FSA) has issued a warning to consumers on crypto investments risks.
According to the regulatory body, investments like bitcoin exchange-traded products (ETPs) may be inadequate and risky for retail users. Erik Thedéen, FSA Director-General, pointed out that bitcoin exchange-traded products are unfit for most consumers.
The FSA also noted that after conducting a study of the market for financial products with underlying crypto-assets, it came to this conclusion. It pointed out that the study results showed a “high risk” citing that users could lose money on their investments.
Cryptocurrency crime drops in 2020
It is important to note that cryptocurrency crime rates dropped in 2020. “Crypto-related crimes such as theft, hacks, and other fraudulent activities dropped by 57% in 2020″ Reuters reported.
In an interview, Dave Jevans, CipherTrace’s CEO, disclosed that hacks, theft, and other cryptocurrency crimes due to financial institutions and crypto exchanges adopting sophisticated and more robust security measures.
He said, “Regulation and enforcement are restricting centralized fraud schemes, which are pushing criminals to exploit decentralized finance services.”