Bittrex to pay $30M for sanctions violation

Crypto Exchange Bittrex agreed To pay $30 million for violating federal sanctions set by the U.S. Treasury Department.

The settlement was announced on October 11 by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets (OFAC) and the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN).

Exchange approved About 1,800 people from sanctioned territories such as Iran, Cuba, Sudan, Syria and Crimea made more than 116,000 transactions. According to the settlement, the total remitted amounted to him $260 million.

In addition to paying the fine, Bittrex has also taken necessary steps to comply with existing sanctions.

Co-op Bittrex receives discount from OFAC

According to the settlement, Bittrex allowed individuals in sanctioned territories to make cryptocurrency transfers between 2014 and late 2017.

In 2019, the exchange openly said it allowed users from some sanctioned territories, such as Iran, to open accounts on its platform. Frozen.

Even though the exchange had been violating sanctions for three years, OFAC claimed it was a small, new company that provided substantial cooperation in the investigation. It said:

“In response to apparent violations, Bittrex has taken additional actions, including blocking IP addresses associated with sanctioned jurisdictions, limiting account holders in sanctioned jurisdictions, and using new tools to improve compliance. We quickly took a series of corrective actions that significantly reduced the apparent violations.”

The maximum amount OFAC could impose on Bittrex could exceed $35 billion. However, OFAC decided to fine Bittrex he just over $24 million, considering the early cooperation.

FinCEN Fines Bittrex $29.8 Million

OFAC was concerned about the fact that Bittrex allowed sanctioned individuals to operate on its platform, while FinCEN noted the amount of questionable activity taking place on the exchange.

From 2014 to early 2017, Bittrex failed to file a Suspicious Activity Report (SAR), according to FinCEN. These reports would have included 200 transactions that moved $140,000 worth of cryptocurrency and another 22 transactions that exceeded $1 million.

FinCEN said:

“Bittrex has failed to implement effective transaction monitoring on its trading platform.It has minimal anti-money laundering training, experience in manually reviewing all transactions, and over 20,000 transactions per day. Sometimes it was more than the case.”

FinCEN decided to fine Bittrex $29.8 million as a result of failing to file a SAR. However, OFAC also said that the $24 million fine will be refunded to the exchange. Therefore, Bittrex ended the deal after he only paid a $30 million fine.

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