Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Russia’s Central Bank: Bitcoin Users Can Face Jail Time

Russia’s top monetary authority slammed digital currencies Monday, warning that Bitcoin use can lead to criminal charges in the country. The anonymously produced “virtual currencies” can be intended by its producers for money laundering and terrorism funding purposes, the Central Bank said in a statement. This means that Russian digital currency users can become involved in criminal activity simply by using the Bitcoin and its analogues, the regulator said. Digital currencies also lack any backing and are used for financial speculation, which increases risks for users, the Central Bank said. Moreover, Russian legislation directly prohibits the issuance of surrogate currency, the statement said. Money laundering is punishable with up to seven years in prison in Russia; funding terrorism – with up to 15 years. Russia’s legislation does not state a punishment for issuing surrogate currency.


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