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US Sanctions Cryptocurrency Mixer over Laundering by N. Korea

Written: 2023-11-30 08:43:09Updated: 2023-11-30 09:42:46

US Sanctions Cryptocurrency Mixer over Laundering by N. Korea

Photo : YONHAP News

The U.S. has slapped sanctions on a cryptocurrency mixer that facilitated the money-laundering activities of a cyber hacking group sponsored by North Korea.

The Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control announced on its website on Wednesday that it sanctioned Sinbad, a virtual currency mixer, which serves “a key money-laundering tool” of the North’s state-sponsored Lazarus Group.

According to the office, “Sinbad has processed millions of dollars’ worth of virtual currency from Lazarus Group heists, including the Horizon Bridge and Axie Infinity heists.”

The office added that Sinbad is “used by cybercriminals to obfuscate transactions linked to malign activities such as sanctions evasion, drug trafficking, the purchase of child sexual abuse materials, and additional illicit sales on darknet marketplaces.”

The latest move comes after the UN Security Council Sanctions Committee on North Korea assessed on October 27 that Lazarus had laundered 100 million dollars'-worth of bitcoins through Sinbad, citing studies by blockchain analysis provider Elliptic Enterprises.

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