Crypto developer arrested ‘for helping North Korea’

A cryptocurrency researcher has been arrested for allegedly helping the North Korean government use the technology to launder money and evade sanctions designed to restrict its nuclear programme.

Virgil Griffith, 36, attended a conference in Pyongyang in which he gave a presentation on topics that were pre-approved by North Korean officials, according to the US Department of Justice.

Aware of sanctions against the country, Griffith had previously applied to the State Department for permission to attend the conference.

Although this was refused, the legal complaint against him alleges that Griffith attended the conference anyway, travelling via China.

He paid €100 for a visa which he attached to a paper separate from his US passport to avoid creating physical proof that he had been to North Korea.

Mark Gibson

Graduates in Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois 1990. Move to Los Angeles California in 2004. Specialized in Internet journalism.

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