German investigators take down crypto money laundering site

German authorities have shut down a cryptocurrency money laundering site and arrested several people in connection with the operation.

The Federal Criminal Police Office (BKA) of Germany announced on Monday that they had closed down an online marketplace used to launder money through cryptocurrencies, arresting several people in the process.

The site, which was operating since December 2019, allowed criminals to anonymously buy and sell cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin and Ethereum without any identification requirements. The criminals could then use the funds to purchase illicit goods, such as drugs and firearms, without being detected.

The BKA was able to locate the individuals behind the site by tracing their digital footprints, and have since arrested four people in connection with the operation. The suspects are believed to have laundered over €25 million (US$29 million) in cryptocurrency.

The BKA has warned that the use of cryptocurrencies can be a highly lucrative activity for criminals, and urged the public to be aware of the risks associated with the digital currency.

“We want to raise public awareness of the risks associated with the use of cryptocurrencies,” said BKA President Holger Münch. “We are also working closely with our international partners to track down those responsible for money laundering and other illegal activities.”

The BKA's actions come as part of the German government's efforts to combat money laundering and illicit financial activities, which have become increasingly common with the rise of cryptocurrencies.

The current investigation is ongoing, and the BKA has promised to continue its efforts to ensure that criminals are unable to take advantage of cryptocurrencies to launder money.