The US Treasury Department has identified Bitzlato as a “primary money laundering concern” in connection with the Russian government.  | Photo by Amelia Holowaty Krales / The Verge

US authorities announced on Wednesday that the Russian co-founder of Hong Kong-based crypto exchange Bitzlato had been arrested in Miami for allegedly processing $700 million in illicit funds. Bitzlato’s crypto assets were seized and its digital infrastructure was dismantled by French authorities working alongside the US (in addition to other international authorities).

The US Treasury Department’s Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) has since identified Bitzlato as a “primary money laundering concern” in connection with the Russian government.

In a statement coinciding with the arrest, FinCEN accused Bitzlato of “repeatedly facilitated transactions for Russian-affiliated ransomware groups, including Conti, a…

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