Police Hunting Bitcoin Traders in Bangladesh

The country’s security organs held meetings about the issue and arrested some Bitcoin traders. The authorities notified banks to be vigilant  

Bitcoin trading is illegal in Bangladesh, but the cryptocurrency trading is still rampant. Many freelancers, cricketers, celebrities and international travelers are dealing in Bitcoin. This is according to the Bangladesh Financial Intelligence Unit (BFIU).

Additionally, the Cyber Crime Unit arrested a few users recently and is hunting for more. This is according to the unit’s assistant deputy commissioner Nazmul Islam. He added that the group is checking some websites for authenticity saying that investigating cryptocurrency trading is complex.

BFIU, BTRC, and the Foreign Exchange Police Department have had four meetings together. This is to plan on countering the use of Bitcoin in the country.

Trading Bitcoin is an infringement of the country’s laws on money laundering or terrorist funding.

BFIU also asked banks to be wary of Bitcoin traders.

“Banks and other financial organizations of the country have been ordered to maintain a strict vigil on cryptocurrency trading. A circular will soon be sent out detailing the matter,” a BFIU official said.

He said cybercrime investigators are working on the issue and that it is not possible to buy Bitcoin through banks in the country.

The Bangladesh Bank also warns people against trading in Bitcoin. The bank says the cryptocurrency is not currently accepting as legal tender. It means the cryptocurrency is risky to use.

Upcoming digital currency

Meanwhile, the country may soon have digital money. This is according to an advisor to the Bangladesh Bank S K Sur Chowdhury. He was speaking at the last year’s “Digital World 2017” conference.

“A combined committee will be forming with officials from the central bank as well as government and non-government financial organizations. It will figure out how to create and implement Bangladesh’s digital currency.”

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David Kariuki is a journalist who has a wide range of experience reporting about modern technology solutions including cryptocurrencies. A graduate of Kenya's Moi University, he also writes for Hypergrid Business, Cryptomorrow, and Cleanleap, and has previously worked for Resources Quarterly and Construction Review magazines.

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