Stablecoin issuer Tether froze roughly $225 million worth of USDT tokens as part of an investigation into a Southeast Asia human trafficking syndicate launched by the United States Department of Justice (DOJ).
In a Nov. 20 announcement, Tether said it had worked with the DOJ and crypto exchange OKX to freeze $225 million USDT in “external self-custodied wallets.” The firm reported the illicit funds had been used by a crime syndicate responsible for a “pig butchering” romance scam — a technique in which bad actors attempt to develop an online relationship with unsuspecting individuals, often convincing them to invest in legitimate businesses before conning them.
According to Tether, the freezing of the USDT followed a “months-long investigative effort” into the location of the funds between the firm, OKX, DOJ, and U.S. law enforcement agencies. The stablecoin issuer said it would work with U.S. authorities to unfreeze any “lawful” wallets that may have been seized as part of the effort.
“Through proactive engagement with global law enforcement agencies and our commitment to transparency, Tether aims to set a new standard for safety within the crypto space,” said Tether CEO Paolo Ardoino. “Our recent collaboration with the Department of Justice underscores our dedication to fostering a secure environment. We believe in leveraging technology and relationships, such as our collaboration with OKX, to proactively address illicit activities and uphold the highest standards of integrity in the industry.”
Impressive work by @Tether_to and @okx teams, alongside with Law Enforcement to stop bad guys https://t.co/P0U8ydP91x
Tether has previously worked with global law enforcement agencies to freeze assets allegedly linked to criminalRead more on cointelegraph.com