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DOJ Establishes National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team

The DOJ established a National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Team ("NCET") to investigate and prosecute criminal activity involving cryptocurrency.

Deputy Attorney General Lisa O. Monaco announced that NCET's focus will be on criminal activity committed by "virtual currency exchanges, mixing and tumbling services and money laundering infrastructure actors." In addition, she stated that the NCET team will aid in asset recovery in connection with cryptocurrency fraud and extortion, including ransomware payments.

Ms. Monaco stated that the NCET's objectives include:

  • establishing "strategic priorities" for cryptocurrency investigations;
  • determining areas that require additional investigative and prosecutorial focus, such as financial institutions engaging with cryptocurrency; and
  • engaging with the cryptocurrency private sector to "further the criminal enforcement mission."

The NCET will be supervised by Assistant Attorney General Kenneth A. Polite Jr. and staffed with experts from the DOJ Criminal Division's Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section ("MLARS") and Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section ("CCIPS").

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