Jail time, $800K forfeiture await unlicensed Bitcoin trader in California

One of the issues when it comes to a lack of clear regulation is that there are Bitcoin dealers that have operated illegally that might have to face the consequences. This certainly is the case for an individual named Jacob Burrell Campos, who was forced to turn over his gains.

Campos was forced to forfeit $823,357 in illicit profits and was also sentenced to two years in prison, as described in a news release from April 8. Campos is a U.S. citizen but is a resident of a city called Rosarito in Mexico, which is known for being a resort town. The news release came from the U.S. Attorney’s Office of the Southern District of California.

The 22-year-old was not only fined but was also sentenced to two years in prison. His operation was extensive, as he sold hundreds of thousands worth of Bitcoin Core (BTC) to over 1,000 individuals, authorities said. Campos even advertised his services on Localbitcoins.com at one point, as well.

Campos pleaded guilty in October 2018, which has probably helped the amount of prison time that he was sentenced to. He admitted to operating a cryptocurrency exchange that wasn’t registered with the Financial Crimes Enforcement (FinCEN) of the U.S. Department of Treasury, and even used encrypted applications in order to evade authorities. In addition, he charged 5% and was willing to accept cash and wire transfers without doing any due diligence as to the source of the money. He also joined forces with a U.S.-based metal dealers to ramp up operations.

Prosecutors said Burrell admitted “he had no anti-money laundering or ‘know your customer’ program.”

Prosecutors stated that this was an example of how the cryptocurrency sector can help many criminals launder money, and pointed out that the U.S. government would “continue to investigate and prosecute all white collar criminals.”

New to Bitcoin? Check out CoinGeek’s Bitcoin for Beginners section, the ultimate resource guide to learn more about Bitcoin—as originally envisioned by Satoshi Nakamoto—and blockchain.