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Police Seize £180 Million In UK's Largest-Ever Cryptocurrency Raid

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Police Seize £180 Million In UK's Largest-Ever Cryptocurrency Raid

Police have seized a record-breaking £180 million in cryptocurrency in what has been described as the largest-ever crypto raid in the UK to date.

A 39-year old woman has been interviewed in connection to the seizure, which comes as part of a major crackdown on digital money laundering conducted by the Metropolitan police.

Authorities say the amount seized by the raid in London easily tops the previous record of £114 million, which itself was only made last month.

Police did not disclose which cryptocurrencies had been seized in the raid.

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Police did not say which cryptocurrencies they had seized. Credit: PA
Police did not say which cryptocurrencies they had seized. Credit: PA

The raid comes after the Met's Economic Crime Command unit followed up on information regarding the transfer of criminal assets, as part of an ongoing investigation into high-end money laundering.

The suspect was originally arrested on 24 June on suspicion of money laundering offences and has since been bailed until a date later this month.

She was interviewed under caution concerning her suspected links to the £180m crypto haul on 10 July.

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Detective Constable Joe Ryan said that the case had been 'complex', before adding that: "We have worked hard to trace this money and identify the criminality it may be linked to.

"Today's seizure is another significant landmark in this investigation which will continue for months to come as we hone in on those at the centre of this suspected money laundering operation."

Deputy Assistant Commissioner Graham McNulty said police are 'increasingly seeing' criminals using cryptocurrency 'to launder their dirty money'.

He added: "The detectives on this case have worked tirelessly and meticulously to trace millions of pounds worth of cryptocurrency suspected of being linked to criminality and now being laundered to hide the trail.

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"Those linked to this money are clearly working hard to hide it. Our investigation will stop at nothing to disrupt the transfer and identify those involved."

Cryptocurrency is legal mined by incredibly high-spec machines, or through the cloud. Credit: PA
Cryptocurrency is legal mined by incredibly high-spec machines, or through the cloud. Credit: PA

Cryptocurrency transactions have proven popular as they provide more anonymity to both senders and receivers of money, allowing users a degree of privacy when making transactions.

However, the Bitcoin cryptocurrency has recently been criticized for its environmental impact, with cryptocurrency 'miners' requiring enormous sums of electricity in order to generate enough power to successfully create more of the currency.

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Nevertheless, Bitcoin has seen its value skyrocket in recent years, leading many to speculate we are currently in the middle of a digital gold rush.

Words: Tom Sanders

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: UK News, crime, Cryptocurrency

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