The Russian authorities want to legally confiscate cryptocurrencies, as is already possible with more traditional forms of ownership.
In an attempt to fight cybercrime, the Ministry of the Interior intends to develop legal provisions allowing state agencies to confiscate cryptocurrencies that belong to criminals. Apparently, the relevant law is expected to enter into force by the end of 2021. Information was provided this week by RBC .
Cryptocurrencies under the magnifying glass of Russia
As part of the activities described above, the Ministry of the Interior will be joined by the Rosfinmonitoring finance regulator, the Prosecutor General’s Office, the Investigative Commission, the Ministry of Justice, the Federal Customs Service, the Federal Security Service and the Supreme Court.
The Russian parliament has also suspended the long-awaited regulation on cryptographic assets, which further complicates this issue.
According to the report, a legal definition of cryptocurrency is required. It is not entirely clear whether this law can be described as a good or cash equivalent. However, experts add, the definition contained in the new regulations may, in this case, be inadequate or insufficient to complete the confiscation law.
How to confiscate BTC?
There are also other potential problems associated with the government’s plan. Regulatory authorities are aware of the difficulties associated with the confiscation of cryptocurrencies also in terms of technology. These, after all, can be found on different types of wallets protected by both encryption and user passwords.
Still, the authorities believe they may be able to cooperate with stock exchanges to isolate and freeze criminal funds. This is what Nikita Kulikov, a member of the board of experts of the State Duma and the Autonomous Non-Profit Organization PravoRobotov, believes.
In addition, agencies can develop their own cryptocurrency wallets and find ways to convert digital resources into Fiats. “To this end, they can create a state-owned crypto-exchange and crypto-ruble with a fixed exchange rate, with the help of which the seized funds will be stored,” said Kulikov.
While law enforcement is trying to learn about cryptocurrency, the Russian central bank remains indifferent to them. In October this year, the chairwoman of the Bank of Russia Elvira Nabiullina said that she saw no reason to issue a digital ruble.