Money laundering through cryptocurrency, foreign nationals & their Indian associates involved
The Enforcement Directorate (ED) is investigating seven cases in which Cryptocurrency has been used for money laundering and has so far attached proceeds of crime worth Rs.135 crore. Finance Ministry on Monday informed Parliament about the ongoing probes on Cryptocurrency involving money laundering.
Law enforcement agencies have flagged usage of Cryptocurrency by cybercriminals and cases investigated by the ED under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) reveals that the accused have laundered proceeds of crime (PoC) through the virtual currency, Minister of State for Finance Pankaj Chaudhary said in a written reply to the Lok Sabha.
“Enforcement Directorate (ED) is investigating 07 cases under PMLA, 2002, in which Cryptocurrency has been used for Money Laundering,” he said. So far, the ED has attached PoC amounting to Rs.135 crore under the PMLA in these cases, the Minister added.
To a query on whether the government has identified people involved in such activities in the country, Chaudhary said investigations conducted by the ED so far, revealed that some foreign nationals and their Indian associates have laundered the PoC through Cryptocurrency accounts at certain exchange platforms.
In one of the cases, an accused has been arrested by the ED in 2020 for facilitating the foreign-related accused companies to launder the PoC by converting money generated out of crime into Cryptocurrency and thereafter transfer to foreign countries. A prosecution complaint has been filed in this case before the PMLA Special Court.
Recently published Knight Frank Report said that 18% of India’s super-rich is investing in Cryptocurrencies. Two weeks back Supreme Court asked Government to clear its stand on the legality of Cryptocurrency in a bail application by a person arrested in the Crypto trade.
 18% of the super-rich Indians invested in Cryptocurrencies and 11% in NFTs last year: Knight Frank Report – Mar 01, 2022, PGurus.com
 Supreme Court asks Government to make clear its stand on the legality of Cryptocurrency trade in India – Feb 25, 2022, PGurus.com
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