Nexo Offices Raided in Sofia, Bulgaria
An international operation against a large-scale scheme for financial crimes, money laundering and violations of international sanctions against Russia is currently underway in Bulgaria's capital Sofia as the offices of an international cryptocurrency lender are being raided.
On the 12th of January local law enforcement raided the offices of renown crypto lender Nexo. The interrogations are still ongoing.
Investigators from the National Investigation Service, National Security Agency officers and prosecutors, together with foreign services, are going through the Bulgarian company’s offices.
Per the spokesperson of the General Prosecutor’s Office, Siyka Mileva, more than 300 people are involved in the “neutralisation of the criminal activities” of Nexo.
Back in September, regulators in eight U.S. states (California, Kentucky, New York, Maryland, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Washington and Vermont) launched investigations for securities law violations against Nexo, which led to the company’s exit from the American market.
According to a blog from the company, Nexo had negotiated with the authorities at state and federal level, but had reached an “impasse” in its attempts to “proactively modify its business model”.
The activity of the company was carried out from Sofia, and the interest rates that the investors would receive were many times higher than those of traditional banking institutions and various brokerages.
The probe into the crypto company’s activities in the country was launched several months ago after foreign services detected suspicious transactions that were reportedly aimed at circumventing sanctions imposed by the European Union, the UK and the U.S. on Russian banks, as well as on companies and citizens from Russia.
New York Attorney General Leticia James also filed suit against the platform.
In the footage released of the raid, police cars can be seen parked outside the offices of the company, whose founders and owners at the moment are former lawmaker from the political party “Reformers Block” Antoni Trenchev and Kosta Kanchev.
Without commenting on the operation, in a series of tweets Nexo stated how it takes money laundering prevention extremely serious and what measures it has taken, but some regulators have allegedly adopted a “raid first, ask later” approach.
“In corrupt countries this can be considered racketeering, but that too will pass,” the company wrote in its series of tweets.
There have been several lawsuits filed against Nexo by investors, the most recent of which is by three Irish developers demanding at least $59 million for allegedly freezing accounts and then forcing them to sell significantly below market price.
The investigation is currently ongoing and CoinsPress’s team is following for updates.