The U.S. Treasury Department’s OFAC – Office of Foreign Property Control has imposed sanctions on three Chinese nationals and their cryptocurrency addresses, testifying they violated money laundering and drug smuggling laws.
OFAC named Fujing Zheng, Xiaobing Yan, and Guanghua Zheng as narcotics traffickers below the Foreign Narcotics Kingpin Designation Act, freezing any property they personal within the U.S. and listing several email aliases, citizen numbers and passport data for the three.
The agency also listed various bitcoin addresses, in addition to one litecoin address, that the agency claims belong to the Chinese residents.
Based on the press release, Fujing Zheng is a “significant foreign narcotics trafficker,” who obtained assist from Guanghua Zheng. Yan has individually been designated “as a significant narcotics trafficker.”
In addition to naming the three people, OFAC listed Qinsheng Pharmaceutical Technology Co. Ltd. and the Zheng Drug Trafficking Organization on Wednesday’s update.
OFAC regulated with the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) and local law enforcement, stated Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Sigal Mandelkar in a statement.
The group particularly coordinated Wednesday’s designations with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi, the Department of Justice’s Criminal Division, the Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA) Cleveland and Gulfport offices and DEA’s Special Operations Division, the release stated.
Wednesday’s motion marks the second time OFAC had sanctioned digital currency addresses mainly, having last done so in November 2018 when a pair of Iranian nationals had been added to the Specially Designated Nationals listing.
On-time, Mandelker stated the agency was “publishing digital currency addresses to establish illicit actors working in the digital currency space.”
Individuals who violate the Kingpin Act may face civil penalties of a $1.1 million fine per violation, along with possible felony penalties of a $5 million fine and up to 30 years in prison.