In Russia, the anti-drug will help track cryptographic transactions

In Russia, the anti-drug will help track cryptographic transactions

In Russia

The Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Russian Federation (MVD) and the Bank of Russia have agreed to cooperate with the public movement Stopnarkotik to identify financial flows involving cryptocurrencies obtained as a result of drug sales. The letter signed by Major General Andrei Yanishevsky, head of the Drug Control Department at the Interior Ministry, was published after a business meeting with representatives of the drug organization. The decision thus comes in response to Stopnarkotik's request to the two institutions to carry out an investigation focused on Suex, an OTC crypto broker based in Russia, and its connections with other companies and banks.

In September, the US Treasury Department had already blacklisted the Czech-registered entity Suex OTC sro which operates from physical offices in Moscow and St. Petersburg. The crypto platform is suspected of processing hundreds of millions of dollars in coin transactions related to scams, ransomware attacks, darknet markets, and the infamous Russian exchange BTC-e.

Photo credit - depositphotos .com

Since launching in 2018, Suex is believed to have received over $ 481 million in BTC alone, of which nearly $ 13 million came from ransomware operators like Ryuk, Conti and Maze, over 24 million were sent by crypto scams like Finiko, 20 million came from mixers and another 20 million from darknet markets like Hydra.

“We have received a response from the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Central Bank. We also had a personal meeting with the Ministry of Internal Affairs so that they had an understanding of how we receive information, including money laundering, ”said the movement's president, Sergei Polozov, who later added that the Ministry of Interior Russo is ready to accept Stopnarkotik's data and to cooperate with the organization.

Trevor Reed, Ex-U.S. Marine Imprisoned in Russia, Goes on Hunger Strike

A former U.S. Marine jailed in Russia on what he said were trumped-up charges has gone on hunger strike in protest at the conditions of his incarceration, his family said in a statement which prison authorities in the country have rejected.

Trevor Reed, 30, from Texas, has been in Russian custody since August 2019 after he was charged with assaulting police officers who were driving him to a police station following a drunken night out.

His lawyers said that his nine-year jail term was harshest ever handed down for such charges, CBS News reported.

The U.S. Embassy in Moscow also criticized the trial, noting that the two officers struggled to recall the alleged incident in hearings and contradicted themselves in their account of what happened.

In June, Moscow City Court rejected his appeal and U.S. Ambassador to Moscow, John Sullivan, said the U.S. would continue fighting for his release.

U.S. marine Trevor Reed during his verdict hearing at Moscow's Golovinsky district court on July 30, 2020. His family said he has gone on hunger strike in protest at the conditions he faces in a nine-year jail term. DIMITAR DILKOFF/Getty

Reed's Russian girlfriend told ABC News that he started his hunger strike on November 4.

Reed's family said it had been informed that he had started a hunger strike 'to protest his arbitrary detention and Russian authorities' numerous and flagrant violations of his basic human rights and his rights under Russian law.'

The family said Reed was being held in a small room with a hole in the floor for a toilet and had been denied communication with his parents for 116 days. He was also not allowed to receive books or letters.

'While we are immensely proud of our son's strength of character, we are also extremely worried about his health,' Reed's parents Joey and Paula and sister Taylor said in the statement to CBS.

They said their concerns about his well-being 'is magnified by Russian authorities' decision to hold Trevor incommunicado which makes it impossible for us or the [U.S.] Embassy to monitor his health.'

Prison authorities in the Mordovia region where Reed is being held, denied his rights were being abused or that he was on hunger strike.

'He is eating in line with the daily schedule,' Russia's Federal Penitentiary Services said in a statement to Reuters.

There has been speculation about Reed being part of a prisoner swap involving Paul Whelan, another American jailed under controversial circumstances. Whelan was arrested in Moscow in 2018, convicted of espionage and jailed for 16 years.

Reed's family said it urged officials in Washington to strike a deal with Moscow that would see Russians held in U.S. jails freed.

Russian media have said that possible candidates for a prisoner swap are Konstantin Yaroshenko, a pilot serving 20 years for conspiracy to smuggle cocaine, and convicted arms trafficker, Viktor Bout.

Newsweek has contacted the U.S. embassy in Moscow and Russia's Federal Penitentiary Services for comment.

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