Thousands of cryptocurrency farmers arrested for money laundering: China tightens the net of virtual currency regulation again

On June 10, AFP Beijing focused on China’s recent operation to close the net on telecom fraud and virtual currency money laundering.

On June 9, the Chinese Ministry of Public Security issued a news release stating that under the framework of a nationwide unified crackdown on new types of telecom network crimes, public security authorities in 23 provinces, autonomous regions and municipalities, including Beijing, Hebei, Shanxi and Liaoning, have synchronized the “netting” operation, which is the fifth round of concentrated netting operations, arresting more than 1,100 suspects and involving more than 170 criminal groups. A total of 311,000 suspects have been arrested so far, involving 15,000 gangs.

The “Card Break” operation of China’s public security authorities targets the fraudulent phenomenon of using virtual currencies to transfer the funds involved in order to avoid verification. In the end, they help the fraudsters to realize the transfer of illegal funds and money laundering. After completing the money laundering, the “coin farmers” can get a commission ranging from 1.5% to 5%.

AFP followed the news, writing that China, once a haven for virtual currencies, has taken an extreme turn in 2019, with Beijing halting virtual currency payments, accusing them of being a tool for criminal activity, and last month reaffirming order, sending bitcoin plummeting. China has also begun to severely restrict bitcoin mining in recent weeks, and on Wednesday, Qinghai called a halt to mining practices. Inner Mongolia announced a similar decree in May, citing the environmental pollution caused by mining. This crackdown on virtual currency money laundering has not officially communicated which virtual coins are being used or talked about the amounts involved, but what is real is that Beijing is showing concern about the risk of speculation and social instability caused by virtual currencies.