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New Jersey Man Admits to Running Unlicensed Bitcoin Exchange

The erstwhile operator of “Destination Bitcoin” could face up to five years in federal prison and a $250,000 fine.

Apr 5, 2021 at 7:12 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 14, 2021 at 12:36 p.m. UTC

A New Jersey man pleaded guilty in federal court to running the defunct crypto exchange “Destination Bitcoin” without proper licensure. 

William Green, 53, told a federal judge he illegally converted clients’ cash into crypto between August 2017 and February 2019. He pleaded guilty Monday to running an unlicensed money-transmitting business. 

The guilty plea wraps up an Internal Revenue Service (IRS) investigation into Green’s crypto business that began in December 2018 and led to a criminal indictment eight months later. Agents brokered an undercover deal with Green that ultimately led to his arrest.

Department of Justice officials did not say how much bitcoin Green bought for his clients, nor did they specify how much he made in fees amassed through the endeavor. Federal law requires money-transmitting businesses to acquire the appropriate licenses. 

Special agents at the Internal Revenue Service and the Department of Homeland Security led the investigation into Green, officials said. Both agencies utilize transaction-tracing tools that peel back bitcoin’s pseudonymity. 

Green is slated for sentencing on Aug. 10.

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