In line with recent report by native news source ‘Pravo’, the Supreme Court of Russia has enclosed the illicit use of cryptocurrencies within the list of criminal offences associated with ML [Money Laundering].
The court has introduced new modifications to the AML [Anti-Money Laundering] decree issued earlier in July 2015. These clarifications relate to Russian criminal code articles dedicated to the legislation of property inherited via criminal means.
In line with a judge named ‘Alexander Chervotkin’ who commented on the rules, within 3 years since the decree was signed, cryptocurrencies became widely utilized by criminals. To prove that, the judge cited many cases in Russian legal practices where drug dealers converted crypto assets into fiat. Chervotkin added that, as such, the criminal code ought to take the new technology into account.
From now, cryptocurrencies that were employed via criminal means and then converted into standard fiat currency will be considered as laundered funds and treated as a criminal offence.
Moreover, the Supreme Court avoids giving legal definition to cryptocurrencies, because the term has not nevertheless been introduced by the Russian government. Moreover, changing cryptocurrencies to fiat can’t be considered as a criminal offense. Therefore, the court 1st ought to prove that the digital assets were obtained by ‘criminal‘ means.
As per Chervonkin, the amendments were developed so as to comply to recommendations from the international FATF [Financial Action Task Force] on ML [Money Laundering]. The FATF, in its flip, is going to ‘visit‘ Russia mid-March as a part of pre-scheduled regular observance.
Russia’s cryptocurrencies related ‘bill‘, that passed its presentation earlier in March last year, has since been sent back for ‘additional edits‘. At the tip of January, the chairman of the upper house of the country’s parliament urged legislators to expedite their work on the digital economy bills. The discussion of the crypto bill is presently ‘expected‘ for March.
Additionally, Russian parliament is considering a proposal to create an ‘oil-backed‘ cryptocurrency – a concept that closely resembles the Petro, a state-owned cryptocurrency in Venezuela launched earlier in Feb. last year. However, the oil-backed coin has thus so far failed to materialise.