Peters & Peters

The fast food worker who helped a fugitive launder stolen bitcoin billions

Last month, an ex-takeaway worker was convicted in laundering the proceeds thanks to which she had gone from living above a Chinese restaurant to a multi-million pound house in an affluent neighbourhood in North London.

After a two-month trial, Jian Wen was found guilty at Southwark Crown Court of an offence relating to money laundering.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) seized bicoin wallets from Wen, which have an estimated value of over £2 billion. The court heard that the sheer scale of the seizure, the lack of evidence of how the wallet had been acquired and a connection to an investment fraud in China showed that it was criminal property.

The CPS said that another suspect, who remains at large, had perpetuated the original fraud and acquisition of the bitcoin. Wen converted large amounts of bitcoin into cash and expensive items, on behalf of this international fraudster.

Amalia Neenan FitzGerald spoke to Bloomberg UK about the development, saying that the seizure of the “bitcoin represents just under a 0.3% market share of all bitcoin that will ever be in existence.”

She added: “This verdict will likely put further pressure on crypto-centric businesses to tighten up their anti-money laundering protocols.”

Wen will be sentenced in May.

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