Accused Bitcoin- (BTC)-e operator Alexander Vinnik has reportedly been extradited to America to withstand a number of fees regarding cash laundering whereas working on the now-defunct cryptocurrency trade.
Vinnik has been embroiled in legal battles over the previous 5 years for his alleged function because the mastermind of BTC-e. The cryptocurrency trade is alleged to have profited from numerous illicit actions that used the platform to launder some $4 billion value of Bitcoin.
Vinnik’s lawyer Frédéric Bélot told American information community CNN on Frida that Vinnik was in transit from Greece to the US, the place he’s set to face a raft of fees within the Northern District Court docket of California. The Russian nationwide is accused of cash laundering and working an unlicensed cash service in America, along with different fees.
The accused has already been serving a five-year sentence in France since December 2020, after he was convicted for cash laundering as a part of an organized prison group. Vinnik’s legal professionals had launched an appeal that was unsuccessful, sustaining that Vinnik was simply an worker of the trade and had no involvement in illicit actions at BTC-e.
Vinnik was initially arrested in Greece whereas on vacation in 2017, with the US, France and Russia tussling for his extradition from that time onwards. Greece’s Council of State opted to extradite Vinnik to France in early 2020, regardless of quite a few makes an attempt by Russia to request his transit to its jurisdiction.
As beforehand reported by Cointelegraph, Vinnik had agreed to an extradition request from Russia, provided that he confronted far much less severe fees. In distinction, Vinnik faces as much as 55 years in jail in America with 21 counts of unlicensed cash service enterprise, cash laundering and associated crimes filed by the Division of Justice.