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U.S. Division of Justice expenses eight Chinese language firms utilizing crypto to facilitate fentanyl commerce


U.S. authorities took motion towards a number of China-based firms and people implicated within the fentanyl commerce on Oct. 3.

The Division of Justice (DOJ) introduced that it has unsealed eight indictments on crimes associated to the manufacturing of fentanyl and methamphetamine, the distribution of artificial opioids, and gross sales associated to precursor chemical compounds.

Although individuals used quite a lot of fee strategies, the DOJ stated that these concerned within the crimes integrated cryptocurrency into their money flows. It famous that crypto transactions allowed individuals to hide their identities and obscure cash trails.

The company particularly said that two people linked to Hebei Shenghao Import and Export Firm — Qingsong Li and Chunhui Chen — held crypto wallets for remittances associated to precursor chemical compounds utilized in drug manufacturing.

The DOJ stated that one other particular person, Wei Zhang, acted in reference to Hubei Guanlang Biotechnology Firm. Zhang is alleged to have operated a crypto pockets that facilitated transactions for gross sales of fentanyl precursors and opioid components.

New Treasury sanctions

A separate assertion from the Treasury’s Workplace of Overseas Belongings Management (OFAC) imposed sanctions on varied events concerned in drug transactions.

The sanctions checklist restricts a complete of 19 cryptocurrency addresses together with wallets holding Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), Tether (USDT), and Tron (TRX).

Although the Treasury’s sanctions goal 28 firms and people, nearly all of the above crypto addresses belong to only 5 people, who’re in flip related to firms concerned within the fentanyl and drug commerce. 4 of these crypto addresses additionally belong to an organization in Vancouver, Canada known as Valerian Labs.

Moreover, the Treasury imposed sanctions on Du Changgen, recognized because the chief of the felony drug syndicate. It said that Changgen has personally obtained cryptocurrency however didn’t embody any crypto addresses belonging to Changgen within the sanctions lists.

There have been a number of latest developments regarding the usage of cryptocurrency within the fentanyl commerce. The DOJ famous that it took different motion towards Chinese language fentanyl firms in June; a few of these entities additionally utilized crypto funds.

Exterior of regulation enforcement, the blockchain evaluation agency Elliptic highlighted the problem in Might 2023, main U.S. Senator Elizabeth Warren to name for motion later that month.

The publish U.S. Division of Justice expenses eight Chinese language firms utilizing crypto to facilitate fentanyl commerce appeared first on CryptoSlate.

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