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New York Man Charged With Running Unlicensed Bitcoin Exchange

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July 25, 2019 | 

Darryn Pollock |  0 Comments| 

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A 46-year-old resident of New Jersey has been charged with illegally running an unlicensed Bitcoin exchange. William Green faces federal charges for the running of a website called Destination Bitcoin.

Green should have been aware of his actions facing legal scrutiny as this is not the first time he has faced charges for this offense. In February of this year, Green was charged with the same crime. 

According to the indictment, Green reportedly accepted more than $2 million in cash, turning the funds into bitcoin for customers for a fee. This falls under the gambit of an illegal money transmitting business and needs to be registered with the Secretary of the Treasury.

Stern punishment

The charge that Green is facing carries a maximum penalty of five years in jail and a $250,000 fine. He could be at the top end of this punishment as Green has reoffended for the same crime in the past five months. 

Green also never attempted to register the business in his name or the name of his company.

The New York State has a reputation as being a tough regulatory place for cryptocurrency with its infamous BitLicence, which offers a license to businesses operating with virtual currencies. 

However, the BitLicence has been roundly criticized for its restrictive regulations on the running of the business. It may well be that Green was looking to avoid any restricting rules on his simplistic business model.

Need for clearer regulations

There have also been calls for regulations to be more precise and more specific when it comes to cryptocurrency businesses, in the US, and globally. Currently, many laws and regulations are being applied to virtual currencies that are not a direct fit. 

A lack of understanding and appreciation for cryptocurrency and blockchain is at the root of these regulatory concerns. However, there does seem to be steps taking place to remedy this. 

In the US, there is a bevy of hearings taking place at the highest level, which are allowing US lawmakers to get a better understanding of the cryptocurrency space.Facebook's cryptocurrency Libra is one such aspect of the industry that has recently been scrutinized by the Senate. 

Following that, the Senate will have another debate on cryptocurrencies to understand them better - this hearing is being dubbed: “Examining Regulatory Frameworks for Digital Currencies and Blockchain” is intended to help build up the regulatory framework around cryptocurrencies in the USA. 

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