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Turkish authorities reportedly seize $40 million of cryptocurrency and have detained 46 persons in an illegal gambling investigation. “This operation came out of Turkish Cyprus and is linked to the murder of Halil Falyalı,” Turkish Minister of Interior Süleyman Soylu said.

Turkey Confiscates 40 Million Dollars in Cryptocurrency

The Office of the Ankara Chief Public Prosecutor’s Smuggling and Organized Crime Investigation Bureau issued an order detaining 46 suspects and confiscated $40 million in cryptocurrency Wednesday, the Daily Sabah reported.

The detention and seizure were part of an illegal betting investigation in eight provinces: Ankara, Batman, Bingöl, Kayseri, Kırıkkale, Muş, Van, and Yozgat.

The suspects allegedly mediated the transfer of illegally obtained funds to the crypto accounts of a criminal organization that includes Halil Falyalı and his wife.

Betting and casino tycoon Halil Falyalı was shot dead on Feb. 8 in an armed assault near his house in Kyrenia, a city on the northern coast of Cyprus. According to the publication, he is accused of leading the illegal betting operation that is currently being investigated.

The net sum is TL 2.5 Billion [$134.5 million] worth of cryptocurrency was transferred to the cryptocurrency accounts of a group of 11 people, including Falyalı and his wife.

“Around $40 million of crypto assets, which were detected to be transferred to crypto asset exchanges in the country and abroad, were seized,” the publication further detailed.

Noting that “This operation came out of Turkish Cyprus and is linked to the murder of Halil Falyalı,” Turkish Minister of Interior Süleyman Soylu said:

The money was transferred for approximately TL 2.5 Billion. Around $40 million worth of cash has been taken. However, this is just one of many.

According to several Turkish media outlets, Bitcoin (BTC), and Tether (USDT), were taken.

Do you have any thoughts about the Turkish authorities taking cryptocurrency from its owners? Comment below to let us know your thoughts.

Kevin Helms

Kevin is a graduate of Austrian Economics. He discovered Bitcoin in 2011, and has been an advocate ever since. He’s interested in Bitcoin security, open source systems, network effects, cryptography, and how economics intersect with cryptography.

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