UK Crime Agency Director: Selling Flats for Bitcoin Could Attract Criminals

A top British crime director is concerned that selling things too expensive for Bitcoin could attract money laundering criminals. "I would be a little skeptical about anything bought with crypto assets," Nigel Leary, director of the National Crime Agency, told The Times of London in an interview published today. “I want to see why it is done this way and what the requirement is for this anonymity and why it should be done in a crypto transaction,” he said. Of course, pricing expensive assets in Bitcoin can attract not only money laundering but also the crypto wealthy. Rather than laundering money, French DJ David Guetta's decision to sell his Miami beachfront apartment for 38 Bitcoin may be an attempt to clean up the exchange of Bitcoin maximalists floundering after the Bitcoin crash. The same could be true for the seller of the $241 million property in One Hyde Park, which was reported to have accepted ETH and BTC offers in April. You can now buy London's most expensive real estate with Bitcoin Bitcoin transactions are not anonymous, they are pseudonymous; You can track the flow of funds between wallets on public ledgers, but you must employ professional blockchain researchers to have a chance to identify wallet owners. In a May report, the NCA said that the late Bitcoin bull run has made life easier for money laundering criminals. “During the UK lockdown, the routine use of crypto assets such as Bitcoin and the dark web has increased to facilitate serious organized crime,” the NCA added. Leary told The Times: “It's easier to cheat when everything is done remotely. I don't need to come to the bank with my passport, which if I'm going to try to cheat will require a bit more preparation than doing online where I can present myself with fake ID documents, fake bank statements. etc." This year's NFT boom has raised concerns that criminals are using crypto art to launder money.

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