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Indian Authority Uncovers Large-Scale Crypto and Hawala Operation, Arrests Key Player

source-logo  news.bitcoin.com 21 June 2024 04:24, UTC

India’s Directorate of Enforcement (ED) has arrested Manideep Mago under the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA), 2002, in connection with an “illegal foreign remittances case” involving cryptocurrency. The investigation uncovered that a Delhi-based company sold cryptocurrencies worth over Rs. 1858 crore ($223 million) on crypto exchanges and made foreign remittances exceeding Rs. 3500 crore. An international Hawala syndicate was involved, sending funds to Canada and Hong Kong using bogus invoices. This syndicate invested heavily in illegal crypto mining and arbitrage trading. Evidence also pointed to the involvement of chartered accountants and bank officials. The ED noted that bogus invoices were created, and forged entries were made in the tally database using 70,000 random names to justify cash deposits, without revealing the source of the crypto. The ED has secured five days of custody for further interrogation of Manideep Mago, and the investigation is ongoing.