The United States Internal Revenue Service (IRS) revealed in its annual report that it seized approximately US$3.5 billion (~R$19.9 billion) in cryptocurrencies in 2021.
This entire amount, according to the information in the document, came from non-tax related investigations.
The nearly 20 billion reais in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies represent 93% of all funds seized by the IRS during the past year. Among the most relevant cases is the Bitcoin Fog mixer, where a man was arrested for laundering 1.2 million bitcoins .
Other state agencies have also successfully seized cryptocurrencies, such as the Department of Justice and Israel's National Terror Financing Office. They all take advantage of the transparency of the non-privacy-focused public blockchain of cryptocurrencies to conduct investigations.
According to Chainalysis, a blockchain analytics company working with governments, as of early 2022 about $10 billion is still held by cryptocurrency portfolios associated with illicit activities such as darknet markets and scam artists.
Read more about illicit activities with cryptocurrencies in other matters:
- Rise of DeFi has led to new opportunities for criminals, says Chainalysis
- Crimes with cryptocurrencies reached US$14 billion, but represent only 0.15% of total transactions
- US Treasury Secretary is concerned about illicit use of cryptocurrencies
- How would the attachment of bitcoin and other cryptoactives work?
Content IRS seized nearly R$20 billion in cryptocurrencies in 2021 and first appeared in Cointimes .