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Putin Advisor: Accepting Bitcoin Payments in Russia is a Crime

(@mpmcsweeney) | Published on February 5, 2016 at 18:48 BST
News

An advisor to Russian president Vladimir Putin has reportedly spoken out about bitcoin, going as far to suggest that taking payments in the digital currency is a criminal act.

Recently appointed Internet advisor German Klimenko told Russian-language online news service Lenta.ru that the acceptance of bitcoin payments constitutes a crime.

According to a translation by Russian bitcoin news site ForkLog, Klimenko told Lenta.ru:

"Bitcoin is not the first one, there are other settlement means. Accepting bitcoin as a payment for anything is unacceptable because it is a crime."

Klimenko went on to suggest that other countries will move to ban digital currencies should broader adoption take place.

"Because no state in the world, while watching it in homeopathic doses with pleasure, but when it becomes critical, everyone will certainly ban it," he told the publication.

The comments come as Russia is moving ahead with plans to prohibit the use of so-called money surrogates, a class of non-government issued monies that include bitcoin. However, questions remain as to what form the ban would take if instituted, and further, how it would actually be enforced.

Klimenko has notably spoken out about regulating the Internet in the past.

As reported by Russian-language online news source Meduza, based in Latvia, the presidential advisor believes that the Internet needs more regulation because "the Internet is flooded with money, and criminals and terrorists".

"Of course, all this needs to be regulated," he said.

Image via Lenta.ru

RussiaVladimir Putin

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