The Internal Revenue Service (IRS), has disclosed that crypto worth $3.5 billion was seized during fiscal year 2021. The sum represents 93% total funds that were seized by the criminal investigation section during this time. It expects that it will seize more cryptocurrency worth billions of additional dollars next year.
IRS Could Take Even More Cryptocurrency Than $3.5 Billion Next Year
The Internal Revenue Service’s Criminal Investigation (CI) unit, the tas authority’s law enforcement branch, released the 2021 Criminal Investigation Annual Report Thursday. IRS Commissioner Chuck Rettig explained that “CI agents are the only federal law enforcement officers with the authority to investigate criminal violations of the U.S. tax code.”
This report provides statistics and partnerships as well as significant criminal enforcement actions by IRS-CI during the last fiscal year. It began on Oct. 1, 2020 and ended September 30, 2021. Among several major crypto cases highlighted in the report is “the longest-running bitcoin money-laundering service on the darknet dubbed Bitcoin Fog.”
According to the 49-page Criminal Investigation Annual Report, $3.5 billion worth of cryptocurrency was seized during fiscal 2021. This is 93% of the total CI seizures that occurred during this period.
According to the agency, it anticipates that it will seize more cryptocurrency worth billions in the next fiscal years. Jim Lee, the IRS Criminal Investigations Chief, spoke to reporters on Thursday.
I expect a trend of crypto seizures to continue as we move forward into fiscal year ‘22 … We’re seeing crypto involved in a number of our crimes as we move forward.
Jarod Koopman was the acting executive director at the IRS Cyber and Forensic Services department.
He was quoted as saying: It’s a huge, huge number … Certainly we’re seeing a shift in our investigative work.” Koopman believes that the IRS Criminal Investigation unit could seize even more in cryptocurrency in the coming fiscal year, stating:
We do expect that to stay somewhat in that range, based off of some investigations we’re currently working on that are pretty large in size and scope … We might be topping that figure next year.
Here is the full report.
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