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Australia’s Crypto-Based Money Laundering, Offshoring to be Tackled by New Law Unit

Cryptocurrencies have often come into the limelight for becoming a tool for criminals who wish to engage in financial frauds. In Australia, the federal police have formed a new unit whose one-track job would be to sniff out illicit money transfers happening through crypto assets. The new unit is being headed by senior level official Stefan Jegra. As per Jegra, the use of cryptocurrencies in crime has risen multi-fold in recent times that in turn rose the need for a standalone team in Australia.

“The increased focus on illicit money transfer via crypto comes as the Australian Federal Police eclipsed a $600 million (roughly Rs. 4,800 crore) revenue-raising target,” Financial Review said in its report.

The Australian police force is aiming to delve deeper into understanding the models of organised financial crimes.

Keenly eyeing the use of crypto in processing economical frauds could help the law enforcement authorities in Australia to have an “intelligent insight” into the international money laundering rink, AFP Commissioner Reece Kershaw reportedly believes.

“It’s targeting assets, but it’s also providing that valuable, investigative tracing capability and lens for all of our commands across all of our businesses, whether they’re national security-related, child protection, cyber – or the ability to trace cryptocurrency transactions across the relevant blockchains is really, really important,” a CoinDesk report quoted Jegra as saying.

In a bid to rid its crypto space from scammers, the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) is looking to enable auto identification and take-down of questionable and suspicious crypto websites.

Australians lost over $81.5 million (roughly Rs. 650 crore) to crypto scams between the months of January and May, the ACCC had said in a June report, raising an alert against the rising number of cyber-crime cases in the nation.

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