Japanese police and financial fraud authorities revealed the number of money laundering cases in the country for the year 2017 and while many would have thought that cryptocurrency-based money laundering would have a huge share, it is just the contrary.
According to the National Police Agency, they have only received 669 suspected cases of money laundering through cryptocurrencies compared to 400,043 total cases of money laundering in 2017. This means cryptocurrency related cases makes up just 0.17 per cent of all suspected money-laundering cases.
The interesting bit is that these cases are just suspected cases of money laundering reported to the financial and police authority by the cryptocurrency exchanges in the country as per the rule. The regulation obliging cryptocurrency exchanges to report such suspected transactions has been established to prevent criminal transactions — one of the biggest fears associated with digital currencies.
The 0.17 per cent of cryptocurrency related money laundering cases undermine the argument that digital currencies are the right tools for criminals to pull of their deeds without getting noticed. The low percentage could also mean that criminals are effectively able to stay hidden with their fraudulent transactions going unnoticed.
Europe on the other hand continues to blow the trumpet against cryptocurrencies stating that as many as three to four billion pounds ($4.1 to $5.5 billion) of criminal money is being laundered using cryptocurrency in Europe alone.
This indicates that either Europe has got it wrong or there is a huge discrepancy in the report put forward by Japanese authorities or that criminals are actually able to stay hidden and continue with their deeds.