Justice Department Will Prosecute Banks, Crypto Exchanges That Help Russians Hide Assets: Report

A new task force has been created to freeze or take the assets of Russians that have been sanctioned following the invasion of Ukraine.

AccessTimeIconMar 11, 2022 at 7:19 p.m. UTC
Updated May 11, 2023 at 6:14 p.m. UTC

The U.S. Justice Department will investigate and prosecute people and financial institutions, including crypto exchanges, that aid Russians in hiding their assets from sanctions, according to a Bloomberg report, citing a senior department official.

  • A new task force composed of prosecutors, agents, analysts and translators from across the Justice Department has been created to pursue these investigations, according to the official.
  • The type of assets that might be frozen or seized include real estate, stock holdings, bank accounts, yachts, airplanes, jewelry and artwork, the official said.
  • The move comes amid growing concern by U.S. lawmakers and others that cryptocurrency can be used by individuals and entities in Russia to avoid economic sanctions.
  • On Friday, the White House and G7 group of nations said they would issue new guidance regarding the use of cryptocurrency to evade U.S. sanctions against Russia.


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Nelson Wang

Nelson Wang was CoinDesk's news editor for the East Coast. He holds BTC and ETH above CoinDesk's disclosure threshold of $1,000.