US Treasury Sanctions crypto addresses linked with Pro-Russian Groups

The groups have raised over $2 million in Bitcoin and Ethereum.
US Treasury Sanctions crypto addresses linked with Pro-Russia Groups

In response to Russia’s aggression on Ukraine, the U.S. Treasury Department has added twenty-two individuals and two entities linked to the Russian government to the sanctions list by the Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC).

In a Thursday notice, the OFAC said that the sanctioned entities furthered the Russian government’s cause by supporting the war. 

The list also includes five crypto addresses tied to Task Force Rusich, a neo-Nazi group operating in Russia that participated in the combat. Rusich allegedly used the crypto address to raise funds, predominantly in Bitcoin and Ethereum, for the war. 

“Today’s action is being taken in coordination with those taken by the U.S. Department of Commerce, which is imposing additional export control measures to further align with partners and allies, as well as by the U.S. Department of State,” read the press release. 

Crypto donations started pouring in for both Russia and Ukraine, circumventing border restrictions, even before the war began in February as both sides sought help from global allies.

According to blockchain data platform Chainalysis, pro-Russian groups had raised over $2 million in cryptocurrency by July.

Ukraine, on the other hand, received nearly $100 million in crypto donations, including a $5 million contribution from Ethereum co-founder Vitalik Buterin, until March, per blockchain analytics firm Elliptic.

“The United States will continue to take strong actions to hold Russia accountable for its war crimes, atrocities and aggression,” said Secretary of the Treasury Janet L. Yellen. “As Ukraine presses forward with defending its freedom, today we’re taking steps to further degrade Russia’s ability to rebuild its military, hold perpetrators of violence accountable, and further financially isolate Putin.”

The U.S. government has recently stepped up its efforts in sanctioning crypto addresses taking part in illicit activities.

After the August ban of crypto mixer Tornado Cash and several Ethereum addresses, the Treasury Department sanctioned seven more crypto addresses linked to an Iranian ransomware group on Wednesday. 

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Himan Mohapatra
Himan Mohapatra
Himan Mohapatra is an industry expert within the crypto-sphere and the primary journalist for Coinmash. He is an expert in finance and disruptive tech, such as blockchain.