Coin Ninga and Dropbit CEO, Larry Harmon, has been arrested on charges of laundering $300 million from Darknet marketplace, Alphabay. In the 3-count indictment, Harmon was charged with money laundering conspiracy, operating an unlicensed money transmitting business and conducting unlicensed money transmission.
According to the indictment, Harmon operated Helix, a Darknet-based crypto lending service from 2014 to 2017. Helix functioned as a Bitcoin mixer to transfer Bitcoins in a manner that conceals the source of the Bitcoin.
Helix has a linkage with “Grams”, a Darknet search engine which is also run by Harmon. Harmon advertised Helix to customers on the Darknet as a way of helping them to hide transactions from law enforcements.
According to Assistant Attorney General of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, Brian A. Benczkowski, Helix allegedly laundered huge sums of illicit narcotics proceeds and other criminal profits for Darknet users around the world.
Benczkowski claimed that this indictment underscores that trying to hide virtual currency transactions in this manner is a crime. He added that, the department can, and will ensure that such crime doesn’t pay.
The US Attorney of the District of Columbia, Timothy J. Shea, also said these charges should serve as a warning to those who seek to use Darknet-based crypto mixers. He said the law enforcement, through its partnerships, will uncover illicit activities and charge those responsible for such unlawful acts.