According to outlet Baza, Anton Shkurenko was wanted at the request of French investigators

​Media reports on the detention of the Bitzlato crypto exchange’s co-founder in Moscow

07.02.2023 - 12:15


2 min

What’s new? According to outlet Baza, Anton Shkurenko, co-founder of the previously closed crypto exchange Bitzlato, was detained in Moscow at the request of Interpol. He was reportedly wanted at the request of French investigators. Shkurenko is suspected of extortion committed by a group of individuals, “data theft and obtaining access to an automated data processing system,” as well as money laundering obtained by criminal means. An extradition probe will be conducted against him, after which a decision will be made to extradite him to France.

Baza Telegram channel

How did events develop? On January 17, the US authorities arrested Bitzlato co-founder Anatoly Legkodymov on charges of laundering $700 million. According to Europol, users exchanged more than $1 billion in assets related to criminal activity through the service.

On January 18, Bitzlato reported the theft of part of customer assets as a result of a hacker attack. The service was suspended for the duration of the proceedings. On January 31, Shkurenko announced the restart of Bitzlato and a refund to the victims. He also said that as part of the investigation law enforcement officers seized a wallet that was used to store part of user assets.

The Binance crypto exchange blocked accounts associated with the exchanger. The restrictions affected users from Eastern Europe and the CIS.

On February 3, the Spanish authorities arrested the co-founder of the EXMO crypto exchange Pavel Lerner, who is accused of taking part in illegal operations on Bitzlato. In addition to Lerner, five more people were detained during the Interpol operation in Europe.

For more details on Legkodymov’s arrest and how Bitzlato drew the US authorities’ attention, read GetBlock Magazine’s special feature.

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