Spanish police have said on Thursday they arrested the CEO, sales executive and marketing director of a Russian OTC crypto exchange Bitzlato, without revealing their names.
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According to a report from Anadolu Agency, nearly half of the $2 billion worth of the funds traded on Bitzlato platform from 2019 to 2021 came from selling illegal products and the dark web. The police said that the raid was a "major blow to the cybercrime ecosystem, and especially the opaque mechanisms used to launder money and monetize the fruits of their activity."
The arrest was part of Europol's international campaign against Bitzlato. As iHodl earlier reported, the European police agency arrested four senior executives of Bitzlato (1 in Cyprus and 3 in Spain), without revealing their status in the firm.
The US Department of the Treasury's Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) arrested Russian entrepreneur Anatoly Legkodymov, the founder of Bitzlato, for processing over $700 million worth of crypto from a darknet marketplace Hydra Market and ransomware gangs.
The DOJ believes that Bitzlato facilitated illicit transactions for ransomware actors from Russia, including Conti and darknet markets such as BlackSprut, OMG!OMG!, and Mega.
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