• A darknet drug dealer is accused of laundering $136 million in bitcoin

  • Authorities in the United States have charged Ryan Farace, a Baltimore resident, with laundering 2,933 BTC between October 2019 and April 2021. Surprisingly, the man was sentenced to prison in 2018 and has presumably carried out the criminal activities from behind bars.

    Even from prison, ‘Xanaxman’ is dealing with Bitcoin.

    According to The Baltimore Sun, Maryland officials have filed charges against Ryan Farace – also known as “Xanaxman” – for laundering 2,933 BTC in less than three years. This sum is worth more than $136 million at today’s prices.

    The criminal and his father are currently serving 57 months in federal prison for selling Alprazolam, a sedative used to treat anxiety and panic disorders.

    Farace worked on the notorious Dark Web, but he was apprehended by police in 2018. He had to forfeit $5.6 million from his illicit activities as part of his sentence back then. He was also forced to give up his crypto holdings of 4,000 BTC.

    The investigators are still unsure if the aforementioned 2,933 coins are among the 4,000 BTC. They speculated that Farace may have possessed additional digital assets that the government was unaware of in the first place.

    The 37-year-old convict requested compassionate release in 2020, citing his poor health and the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the officials denied his request, and he remained in prison.

    The Bitcoin Fog’s CEO Laundered $336 Million in Bitcoin

    It is important to note that the aforementioned incident is not an isolated incident. As reported in April, the Federal Service in the United States arrested Roman Sterlingov, the founder of the notorious bitcoin anonymizer Bitcoin Fog, on suspicion of laundering nearly $336 million in the digital asset over the previous ten years.

    The Russian-Swedish resident allegedly offered protection services to users who wanted to keep their cryptocurrency assets safe. He charged commissions ranging from 2% to 2.50% for this service.

    According to the IRS, the perpetrator pocketed the funds and used them to set up Bitcoin Fog’s server. These actions sparked suspicion, and the subsequent investigation revealed Sterlingov’s criminal activities over the previous decade.

    Sarah Meiklejohn, a computer scientist at the University College of London, praised the investigators’ “follow the money” technique:

    “With blockchain analytics, we always say that all of this activity is forever on this ledger, and if you did something bad 10 years ago, you can be caught and arrested for it today.”

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