Russia is preparing changes to its laws to facilitate the confiscation of cryptocurrencies used by criminals. It features a local news site TASS with reference to the Prosecutor General of the Russian Federation Igor Krasnov.
Krasnov spoke yesterday in St. Petersburg at a conference of leading public prosecutors in European countries. He said Russia was working on some changes to legislation on the confiscation of digital assets because they had become a source of proceeds of crime.
“The use of cryptocurrencies by criminals is a serious problem in our country.”
Krasnov added that the federal Digital Assets Act, introduced in July 2020, was a significant step in overcoming the problem, but that further work is underway to change criminal law and procedures that will allow restrictive measures such as the seizure of virtual assets.
He also stressed how cryptocurrencies in the country are also used for corruption and bribery or money laundering.
Russia and cryptocurrency laws
The law in Russia recognizes cryptocurrencies and allows their use, but does not consider them a means of payment. Already in July last year, it was speculated that new regulations would be added to this law, so it is even possible that the changes mentioned by Krasnov have been under consideration for some time.
The point is that the current law defines cryptocurrencies only as a set of electronic data that can be accepted as a means of payment, but does not specify what uses are allowed. The only de facto prohibition is their use as a means of payment.
Already at the time when this law came out, it was interpreted as a kind of incomplete compromise, ie. as a combination of an unfavorable and pragmatic approach that is unable to respond to the real needs of the market and citizens. The fact that, in the Public Prosecutor’s view, changes are necessary to make it easier for law enforcement authorities to seize cryptocurrencies in the event of a crime leads us to the fact that the authorities would also prefer to regard them as a means of payment.