In France, suspected criminals could have their crypto assets frozen under a new law presented by the country's government Wednesday.
President Emmanuel Macron’s government wants to join the U.K. in handing the police greater power to freeze assets that could otherwise escape their clutches and be laundered away.
“Too often, criminals convert the fruits of their wrongdoing into crypto assets, which can be more easily dispersed and therefore concealed,” said a report annexed to the government’s draft law.
The measures, which largely repeat those first tabled in March, would extend the rules that already apply to conventional bank account holdings to crypto assets. Bank holdings in France can be seized when authorized by a public prosecutor or investigating judge
While much of the bill is dedicated to online crime such as requiring ransomware payments to be reported to the authorities, it covers a range of other issues under French Interior Minister Gérald Darmanin’s purview, such as creating 200 new rural police squads and updating the handling of domestic violence cases.
The proposals will be discussed at a meeting next week by the French Senate’s constitutional law committee, which is responsible for reviewing changes to the country's criminal code.
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