According to Polish media reports, cryptocurrency exchange Bitfinex recently saw roughly $380 million get seized from an account it held in a small bank in Poland, the Cooperative Bank in Skierniewice.
The money was seized as part of an ongoing intrnational investigation, according to reports. The Belgian Ministry of Foreign Affairs was scammed while building the country’s embassy in the Democratic Republic of Congo. An ongoing investigation into the case led to a company, whose “president is of a Canadian Panamanian descent.”
While analyzing this company’s’ connections, investigators found a “man with citizenship of Colombia and Panama,” associated with a large cryptocurrency exchange, according to tvp.info. While this news outlet does not name Bitfinex, it claims “millions of these operations flowed through small Cooperative Bank in Łódź Voivodship.” Bitfinex is believed to have a bank account with a ban located in Skierniewice, a town in Łódź Voivodship.
Per Polish news outlets, a chain of companies was being created. These were used to “hide money from smuggling cocaine to Europe. The companies were also used for large scale scams.” Bitfinex was seemingly involved in these operations as criminals used it to launder money by exchanging it for cryptocurrencies.
A popular tech publication in Poland, Spider’s Web, does name Bitfinex itself. It reports (roughly translated):
“Our unofficial information shows that it is about Bitfinex. The Polish prosecutor’s office has not raised any charges yet, and due to the international dimension of the case, the Central Investigation Office cooperates with Europol and Interpol.”
On Reddit, users managed to uncover that Polish cryptocurrency enthusiasts who use Bitfinex claim to have been interrogated by Polish police. One of them, according to a rough translation, stated:
“I testified as a witness regarding the case of Crypto sp z o.o because they sent me money from Bitfinex and their accounts were blocked.”
Crypto SP Z.O.O means limited company, and refers to Crypto SP, which was reportedly the name used in a bank account belonging to Bitfinex. While it’s unclear what exactly is going on at this point, it appears either Bitfinex was used to launder money, or used a shared bank account with companies involved in criminal activities.
Crypto Globe’s investigation was only able to find Polish sources, whose information was roughly translated. After this story started circulating through social media kethfinex, an admin at Bitfinex’s subreddit stated:
“This is not true and Bitfinex aren't affected by whatever has happened. We'll be releasing an official statement on this later today.”
We will update this article as soon as more information is available.