Polish Police Arrest Head of Payment Processor Tied to Bitfinex Crypto Exchange

Ivan Manuel Molina Lee, president of Crypto Capital, was arrested over allegations of money laundering.

AccessTimeIconOct 25, 2019 at 12:35 a.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 11:37 a.m. UTC

Polish police have arrested Ivan Manuel Molina Lee, president of Crypto Capital, on accusations of money laundering.

According to reports in Polish newspaper W Polityce and news portal RMF24, the crypto entrepreneur was extradited to Warsaw, Poland under police escort. Polish authorities claim that Molina Lee is wanted in Poland for laundering up to 1.5 billion zloty or about $390 million "from illegal sources," according to the Polish report.

Authorities wrote that Molina Lee's crimes included "laundering dirty money for Columbian drug cartels using a cryptocurrency exchange."

Polish prosecutors claim that Crypto Capital held accounts in Bank Spółdzielczy in the town of Skierniewice and that Molina Lee and Bitfinex laundered illegal proceeds through the country.

The company has been in trouble before. Molina Lee is directly connected with a U.S. Department of Justice claim that charged two individuals with running a "shadow banking" service that provided bank accounts for crypto companies. His company, Crypto Capital, allegedly lost $880 million of Bitfinex's cash, leading to a $1 billion token sale this year.

"This the largest effort by Polish prosecutors to secure losses associated with illegal activity," wrote Polish prosecutors, adding:

"The effort was a combined effort between Polisha and international special forces. The proceedings were conducted by prosecutors from the Lower Silesian Branch of the Department for Organized Crime and Corruption of the National Prosecutor's Office in Wrocław and officers who closely cooperated with Europol, Interpol and US services, including the DEA."

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