MP Owning 4376 BTC Suspected Of Illegal Operations
The Ukrainian National Agency on Corruption Prevention (NACP) suspects Dmitry Golubov, a deputy of Verkhovna Rada, of illicit enrichment. The law enforcers found 14 million hryvnias (about $500,000) of unknown origin in the deputy’s financial disclosure. The politician tried to justify this sum with bitcoin operations, the NACP website reports.
Golubov declared 4376 bitcoins equal to $4.6 million at the time of submitting his financial disclosure for 2016. According to the deputy, he acquired the cryptocurrency back in 2012 for $50,000.
In the document for 2017, the politician indicated the same amount of bitcoins but declared them as monetary assets already valued at $64 million. Apparently, at the time of making this declaration, bitcoin was traded at a price of $14,000.
But the law enforcers focused on half a million dollars, claimed as the property of the politician and his wife. They were put next to the declared bitcoins but were listed as cash money with an unknown source of origin. Golubov responded to the NACP’s suspicions saying that he received these funds as a result of conducting transactions with bitcoins.
However, this explanation did not satisfy the agency, since the deputy failed to provide any documents which could confirm the cryptocurrency operations. NACP saw this as signs of a criminal offence and submitted its findings to the police and the National Anti-Corruption Bureau of Ukraine.
Law enforcers are trying to establish whether this was illegal enrichment, for which Ukrainian law stipulates a penalty of imprisonment from three to six years. Moreover, the deputy faces a fine of about $17,000 for false data in the financial disclosure.
Previously, Ukrainian tax officials were accused of fraud involving cryptocurrencies.