Dec 1, 2023

The Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned

Video transcript

The state of crypto is presented by Tron connecting the world to the power of Cryptocurrency. Uh Oh, of course. Uh Another crypto mixing service is facing a lot of heat from the US Treasury Department joining us now to discuss is coin de policy and regulation. Managing editor Nick Day who's also editor of coin desk. Absolutely positively must read State of crypto newsletter. Welcome, Nick. Good morning and Happy Friday. Oh, Happy Friday. Indeed. Ok. So the Treasury Department's Office of Financial Asset Control, also known as Oak for short, sanctioned Sinbad, not the actor who starred in first kid though I, some people think that his performance and that should have been sanctioned. What is the story here? Yeah. So this was earlier this week, we saw a announce sanctions against this mixer alleging that it had been used to move funds uh stolen by North Korea's infamous Lazar group, the hacking entity that, you know, has been tied to things like I infinity horizon and the atomic wallet hack. Um according to a uh you know, funds were moved through Sinbad IO. And um you know, basically that was enough, you know, we've seen this before with tornado cash and other crypto mixers. Us government is still uh not wild about North Korean government laundering funds using crypto mixers. What do we know about Sinbad other, other than his stand up career was quite interesting. It, it's a relatively new mixer from what I understand. So, uh you know, there's a analysis report saying that or from last year saying that this was a mixture that first off private Bitcoin services. Uh Some of the other ones we've seen sanctioned are more focused on, you know, the M and E tokens. Uh This one does support Bitcoin and it appears to have launched or at least gone public around October of 2022. So just over a year ago now, uh in that time, uh you know, we've seen according to other analytics companies, uh millions of dollars worth of funds moved through to make sure the wallets that were sanctioned had about half a million overall uh from what we saw on Tuesday. But do we know about their loca location? Uh Not at this time, we haven't seen anything tied to specific individuals. So, um yeah, I haven't seen anything specific to that, right? Ok. Nick, we of course know the Treasury department previously sanctioned tornado cash. Now we have Sinbad, do you think we're going to see a string of crackdowns uh for other mixing services? It, we can't rule it out. So, you know what we've seen and um you know, Deputy Treasury Secretary, Wadie O actually gave a speech about this to the Block Association earlier this week as well. Uh Basically saying that, you know, when it comes to concerns about national security and things like that. Uh And, you know, obviously North Korea is pretty high on that list. Um They are continuing to, you know, crack down on this and in his speech and in a letter that the Treasury Department sent to lawmakers again earlier this week, um we saw uh you know, various um you know, members uh or sorry Treasury Department say that, you know, they're looking for, you know, additional authorities on, you know, what it comes to sanctions specifically to be able to better crack down on, you know, what they see as this, you know, growing certainly, you know, some unmitigated threat about how, you know, not just North Korea but also terrorist organizations and the like might be using these mixing services. Of course, that's a controversial, you know, proposal within the crypto community. And we've already seen some lawmakers come out, you know, a bit opposed to this. But, you know, if we're looking at it as a, you know, this is a concern that Treasury has, then, you know, I think it makes sense where you're coming from. What's next, of course is, you know, probably see them using their existing authorities to go after whatever other mixers you might say, Nick, you mentioned the department used sin bad to be a, the Treasury Department views Simba to be a bad actor is what you're saying. Right. Yeah. Well, distinction. Yes, Nick, you, you mentioned the industry's response to this and, and lawmakers. I know Lumus and Gillibrand previously uh came out against the tornado cash sanctions. Talk to us a little bit about the opposition. What are people saying um against the sanctions? So, um I haven't heard anything about the, you know, this set of sanctions specifically. But yesterday, we did hear from uh majority with Tom Emmer, the congressman from Minnesota who um you know, kind of opposed the treasury proposal that is asking for these extended authorities saying that uh you know, it's kind of uh it's going a bit far for the, you know, the US government to come out and say, oh, well, we need these additional authorities to protect, you know, people from XYZ. So I, you know, obviously majority whip, that means he's uh you know, one of the highest ranking Republicans in the House of Representatives influential figure. And I imagine if he's out here, you know, pushing back against this, we'll probably see, you know, I would assume certainly other lawmakers uh you know, perhaps also oppose this proposal and request. Uh It's really be an uphill battle, should this go anywhere? And I think getting into Congress, you know, and Congress is various uh funding and bill uh legal battles, you know, legislation battles that are coming All right, Nick, we're gonna have to leave it there. But before we go, I think Lawrence wants to know if you think Sinbad is a good or bad actor Sinbad, the person. Uh it was, I think before my time, so I'm gonna have to, you know, look into the history books a little bit, but we'll check on that later. Ask me Monday. I just said that. So this is not the same. I, I'm still kind of lost. This is not the same Sinbad. Like this isn't a new job that he has. Like, you know, doing this jingle all the way is, is popular right now. Like, he's probably getting residual checks. He's not using it in a mixer. Is that what you're saying? All right. I didn't know he was part of jingle all the way, honestly. But sure.

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