US authorities sanctions two Chinese language nationals related to Lazarus Group Hack


The US Division of the Treasury & # 39; s Workplace of International Property Management (OFAC) sanctioned two Chinese language nationals accused of laundering a cryptocurrency that was stolen in a crypto-exchange hack of 2018. On the identical time, the Justice Division introduced a indictment for cash laundering in opposition to the identical two individuals.

Their exercise is linked to Lazarus Group, a hack group allegedly related to the North Korean authorities. OFAC accuses Yinyin Tian and Juiadong Li of aiding "a malicious cyber exercise." Secretary Steven Mnuchin made the next assertion:

"The North Korean regime has continued its widespread marketing campaign of in depth cyber assaults on monetary establishments to steal funds. The USA will proceed to guard the worldwide monetary system by holding those that assist North Korea chargeable for cyber crime. "

Stole $ 250 million, $ 100 million laundered

On the person indictments of the Ministry of Justice, Deputy Legal professional Basic Brian A. Benczkowski of the Prison Division of the Ministry of Justice commented:

"These defendants are alleged to have laundered a couple of hundred million {dollars} in stolen cryptocurrency to cover transactions for North Korea actors. At the moment's actions underline that the ministry will pierce the veil of anonymity by cryptocurrencies to carry criminals accountable , no matter the place they’re situated. "

The indictment claims that "the North Korean co-conspirators" stole $ 250 million in cryptocurrency in 2018 (could seek advice from the Coincheck hack); and that between December 2017 and April 2019, Tian Yinyin and Li Juiadong laundered $ 100 million in cryptocurrency for his or her North Korean henchmen.


In keeping with the paperwork, "the North Korean conspirators" are additionally chargeable for hacking a South Korean inventory change in November 2019, value $ 48.5 million in cryptocurrency – most likely a reference to the UpBit hacking, with roughly the identical quantity of Ether stolen on the identical time.

In keeping with the press launch from the Ministry of Justice:

“The civil forfeiture grievance particularly mentions 113 digital foreign money accounts and addresses utilized by the defendants and unnamed conspirators to launder cash. The forfeiture grievance goals to reclaim the funds, a part of which has already been seized. "

20 handle versus 113 addresses

The civil confiscation grievance accommodates 113 cryptocurrencies: & # 39; accounts and addresses utilized by the defendants and unnamed co-conspirators to launder cash. The forfeiture grievance goals to reclaim the funds, a part of which has already been seized. "

Nonetheless, the OFAC has solely added 20 bitcoin addresses to its listing of specifically designated nationals. Twelve are linked with Juiadong Li, whereas eight with Yinyin Tian.

None of these 20 addresses presently accommodates bitcoins. Nonetheless, all these addresses appear to belong to solely 5 portfolios, which include 139411.6022 BTC. A kind of portfolios is recognized by two separate pockets explorers as being on the Huobi change – though it’s after all doable that each sources have mistakenly attributed it.

It’s presently unclear why OFAC has solely added 20 addresses to the listing if the Ministry of Justice has 113 crypto addresses and accounts related to the suspect.

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