US Authorities Carry Out The “Largest Financial Seizure” Ever 
Posted 13,February

By Chaveendra Dunuwille

In International News

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According to the US Department of Justice (DoJ), special agents have arrested 34-year old Ilya Lichtenstein and his wife, 31-year old Heather Morgan, in connection to the Bitfinex cryptocurrency exchange hack in 2016, recovering over $4.5 billion. 

According to the DoJ, the couple used “numerous sophisticated laundering techniques” to acquire around 119 754 Bitcoins (currently worth $5 billion) via 2000 unauthorized transactions. 

On Tuesday, special agents obtained warrants to go through the couple’s online accounts and uncovered files containing private keys which accessed digital wallets containing around 94,000 Bitcoins. 

According to Deputy Attorney General Lisa Monaco, the operation was the “largest financial seizure ever,” She also stated that this proves that cryptocurrency is no longer a safe haven for criminals. 

The couple has been charged with conspiracy to commit money laundering and conspiracy to defraud the USA. These charges carry a maximum sentence of 20 and 5-years, respectively.