The FBI has recently filed a complaint for forfeiture in federal court after two bags containing around $77,000 in cash were seized in January this year. The owners of the bags have claimed they intended to buy bitcoin with the money.
The find was made at the Dallas Love Field Airport, when two bags, including a duffle bag and a backpack, were added to checked luggage in January for a flight from Texas to Burbank, California.
An employee for Southwest Airlines claimed that the bags “smelled of marijuana,” and that the backpack had “wads of USD spilling out” of it.
The owner of the duffle bag was a male who claimed in his statement that he was traveling to California to meet with someone to discuss trading for bitcoins, while the female owner of the backpack also claimed she was headed to buy bitcoin.
The owner of the duffle bag insisted that he’d earned the money working in the music business and that they had smoked some marijuana a few days previously, which is why the bag and money smelled the way it did.
The female claimed she had earned the money working in a beauty salon.
Investigators claim that the male was acting “in a very nervous fashion” during questioning and that the female’s story simply wasn’t consistent.
In total both of them were traveling with around $77,010 in cash, which would have bought them 6.12 bitcoins in January.
Reports suggest that no criminal charges have been brought against the pair, but the situation has been used by some to highlight how digital currencies provide an opportunity for individuals to bypass anti-money laundering legislation.
Despite money laundering concerns being raised continuously when arguing against the benefits of digital currency, there was a recent Japanese report that claimed that since the legalization of bitcoin as a recognized legal currency less than one percent of money laundering cases used bitcoin or any other digital currencies.
At present Japan has legalized 16 cryptocurrency exchanges to operate within the country, and are seen as leaders in the charge to implement what many deem to be “constructive regulation” of the industry.
SOURCE: Crypto Disrupt