BTC-e received a $110M penalty from US authorities

Financial Crimes Enforcement Network imposed a  $110M penalty on the BTC-e "for willfully violating U.S. anti-money laundering (AML) laws"
27 July 2017   1469

The Office worked in coordination with the US Attorney's Office of the Northern District of California. According to the official documents of FinCEN, Russian citizen Alexander Vinnik and the BTC-e exchange he represents are accused of money laundering, conspiracy to commit financial crimes, illegal financial transactions and the management of a business related to money transfers. At the same Vinnik FinCEN imposed a fine of $ 12 million for his "role in violations." This is reported on the FinCEN website.

We will hold accountable foreign-located money transmitters, including virtual currency exchangers, that do business in the United States when they willfully violate U.S. anti-money laundering laws. This action should be a strong deterrent to anyone who thinks that they can facilitate ransomware, dark net drug sales, or conduct other illicit activity using encrypted virtual currency.  Treasury’s FinCEN team and our law enforcement partners will work with foreign counterparts across the globe to appropriately oversee virtual currency exchangers and administrators who attempt to subvert U.S. law and avoid complying with U.S. AML safeguards.

Jamal El-Hindi
Acting Director, FinCEN

The agency also notes that the users of the exchange were actively giving advises to the BTC-e administration on the conduct of illegal money transactions and laundering proceeds. Laudering money was from the Darkkroad, Hansa and AlphaBay, well-known deep web drug markets. Also FinCEN noted that for the opening of the trading account on the BTC-e exchange only the email address, password and user name were required.

In addition, BTC-e is involved in part of the funds that were lost after the bankruptcy of Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox. In particular, the FinCEN website says that for the period from 2011 to 2014 BTC-e carried out about 300,000 bitcoins-transactions with illegally obtained funds.

FinCEN also found that the exchange had received funds worth about $ 3 million, which were received as a result of the work of extortion programs, such as "Cryptolocker" and "Locky". Also BTC-e is involved in money laundering through the Liberty Reserve payment system, which was closed by the US authorities in 2013.

Alexander Vinnik was arrested 25th of July in Greece. BTC-e is unavailable from 25th too. Official reason is maintenance.

'Kodak Miner' Turned Out to be a Scam

KashMiner by Spotlite USA was promoted as Kodak branded bitcoin miner 
17 July 2018   132

The KashMiner bitcoin miner, exhibited at the Kodak stand during the CES technology show in Las Vegas, was in fact a product designed to mislead potential consumers and with a potentially unattainable potential return. This is reported by BBC.

Spotlite USA is licensed by Kodak's lighting division, which allows it to use the famous brand in its products. In January 2018 the company introduced its miner and announced that it intends to lease it. According to its business plan, potential users had to pay a commission before getting the device. It was expected that after depositing $ 3,400, the customer will receive a device that will allow him to easily cover expenses and receive revenue from bitcoin mining.

However the company did not have an official Kodak license to use the brand in the production of mining equipment and initially overstated the indicators of the potential profit of its device, refusing to take into account the growing complexity and costs of bitcoin mining. The advertising materials reported that KashMiner brings $ 375 a month, which, subject to a 2-year contract, would allow the client to receive $ 5,600 of profit after paying a commission. Experts from the industry of cryptocurrency call this offer a scam.

There is no way your magical Kodak miner will make the same $375 every month.

Saifedean Ammous


CEO Spotlite USA Halston Mikail previously reported that he plans to install hundreds of miners at the headquarters of Kodak. According to him, he already managed to place 80 miners there, but the Kodak spokesman denied this information.

While you saw units at CES from our licensee Spotlite, the KashMiner is not a Kodak brand licensed product. Units were not installed at our headquarters.

Kodak Spokesman

In a phone call with the BBC, Spotlite's Halston Mikail said the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had prevented the scheme from going ahead.