See More

Converting Bitcoin for Russian Ruble to Be Considered Money Laundering

2 mins
Updated by Geraint Price
Join our Trading Community on Telegram

In Brief

  • The Russian supreme court has overruled an earlier crypto-related money laundering decision.
  • The first court said the defendant wasn't guilty because they didn't try to profit from illegally-obtained funds.
  • A criminal law expert said more work needs to be done to understand the role crypto plays in the judiciary process.
  • promo

The Russian Supreme Court overturned an earlier court ruling that converting cryptocurrencies to rubles constitutes money laundering.

The ruling addresses a case where a drug manufacturer received payment for narcotics in cryptocurrencies.

Russian Supreme Court Rules in Favor of Armed Forces’ View

The Supreme Court of Appeal overturned the drug trafficker’s initial acquittal for money laundering. The court considered the Russian Armed Forces’ 2019 classification of cryptocurrency as a crime subject under articles 174 and 174.1 of the Russian Federation’s Criminal Code.

The first court argued in 2019 the defendant was innocent of laundering because they converted drug revenues into rubles without introducing them into circulation. Additionally, the person didn’t own the funds they converted once they sent them to their cohabitant’s daughter’s account.

According Article 174.1, however, a person doesn’t need to profit from laundered funds for them to be considered guilty. The act of attempting to give lawful appearance to criminal funds is sufficient.

The prosecutor appealing the initial acquittal also argued the defendants’ acceptance of Bitcoin as payment for drugs further indicated an intention to avoid detection.

Developing Judicial Processes Takes Time

Russian law recognizes cryptocurrencies as a means of payment and property. Hence, people can use them for purchases intended to legitimize their origins.

Click here for our run-down of the best Bitcoin exchanges.

However, conversion into fiat for further circulation may warrant investigation. According to a translated Supreme Court statement:

“The focus of intent on the legalization of funds acquired by criminal means is not evidenced by their disposal for personal consumption, and therefore the law enforcer should pay special attention to the proof of the purposes of further operations (for which they were used).”

According to criminal lawyer Andrey Tuzov, it will take time to fully grasp judicial practices related to the criminal use of cryptocurrencies.

For BeInCrypto’s latest Bitcoin (BTC) analysisclick here.

Top crypto projects in the US | April 2024
Harambe AI Harambe AI Explore →
Coinbase Coinbase Explore →
Chain GPT Chain GPT Explore →
iTrustCapital iTrustCapital Explore →



In adherence to the Trust Project guidelines, BeInCrypto is committed to unbiased, transparent reporting. This news article aims to provide accurate, timely information. However, readers are advised to verify facts independently and consult with a professional before making any decisions based on this content. Please note that our Terms and ConditionsPrivacy Policy, and Disclaimers have been updated.

David Thomas
David Thomas graduated from the University of Kwa-Zulu Natal in Durban, South Africa, with an Honors degree in electronic engineering. He worked as an engineer for eight years, developing software for industrial processes at South African automation specialist Autotronix (Pty) Ltd., mining control systems for AngloGold Ashanti, and consumer products at Inhep Digital Security, a domestic security company wholly owned by Swedish conglomerate Assa Abloy. He has experience writing software in C,...