Earlier in 2020, former Ethereum researcher Virgil Griffith was accused because he travelled to North Korea and purportedly helped the country evade sanctions. However, he has pleaded not guilty.
Griffith was arrested by the FBI last year due to illegal travel to North Korea. According to prosecutors, Virgil allegedly used blockchain and cryptocurrency to help North Korea evade sanctions. Prosecutors charged him with violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act.
In court in New York on January 30, Nk News reported that Griffith pleaded not guilty. According to the United States Department of Justice, Virgil gave North Korea highly technical information that may enable the government to evade sanctions.
The United States government said one of the conference organizers particularly asked about the possible use of blockchain and cryptocurrency for money laundering and evading sanctions.
The United Nations flagged the forthcoming cryptocurrency and blockchain conference in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea as a violation of sanctions and warned against the attendance. The UN sanctioned the country in 2006, and the government has been indicted for utilizing cryptocurrency to provide money for its ballistic missile programs.
However, the cryptocurrency community expressed its support for Griffith. This is because some think that his arrest for spreading publicly available information should not have happened.
Griffith’s lawyer, Brian Klein, has promised to defend him and is preparing every fact to be presented before the jury at trial.
Featured image courtesy of CoinDesk.