Cryptocurrency worth almost 6Mn dollars was seized by the NZ police department, from a criminal who has been operating a pirated digital streaming website.
Jaron David McIvor is a 31 year old programmer who recently had all of his assets seized from both his bank account and his cryptocurrency wallets. The New Zealand police department went over to his home in Hamilton and took over all of his assets, as a form of punishment for his crime. McIvor was operating a website that supposedly hosted copyrighted films, pirating the digital assets.
The cryptocurrency that was seized from him almost reached 6Mn dollars, and the police department of New Zealand also froze about 750 thousand dollars from his bank accounts. McIvor’s bank and cryptocurrency accounts weren’t the only one influenced; one of his colleagues had 350 thousand dollars in money and 450 thousand dollars in cryptocurrency taken by the New Zealand authorities.
McIvor had been allegedly using online payment services like Stripe and PayPal to relocate the payments to residents in the US, Vietnam, Canada, and New Zealand. According to Kevin Kay, Detective Senior Sergeant, the alleged relocation of payments and cryptocurrency from a website that infringes copyrights is classified as a form of money laundering.
“Introducing illicitly-obtained funds into New Zealand constitutes money laundering and police will thoroughly investigate and restrain the assets of those who undertake such activity,” Detective Kay stated.
The online payment service, PayPal, discovered unlawful activity and reported it to the US Inland Revenue Service, known as the IRS. The IRS was able to trace the assets, both cryptocurrency and money, back to Jaron McIvor.
What Will the NZ Police Department Do After Seizing the Assets and Cryptocurrency?
“New Zealand works closely with international law enforcement agencies to strengthen New Zealand’s anti money laundering approach,” stated Richard Chambers from the New Zealand Police National Organised Crime Group. “This outcome reflects the importance of these international partnerships and it also demonstrates the capability of our investigators to prevent and respond to cyber-crime and money laundering, which are often unbounded by geography.”
Jaron McIvor has yet to be charged with the offense of money laundering, and they are filing it under a civil suit made under the Criminal Act, known as the Criminal Proceeds Recovery Act.
The issue of the alleged assets and cryptocurrency earned from the website are considered to be under the authorities’ property until now.