Russian ‘Ukraine Crypto Donor’ Faces Treason Trial

    The FSB emblem on a building in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.The FSB emblem on a building in Nizhny Novgorod, Russia.
    Supply: irene_rebrova/Adobe

    The Russian FSB, the nation’s intelligence service, has charged a man suspected of donating crypto to Ukraine’s military with excessive treason.

    The person, named Alexander Vechirko (54), was arrested by the FSB (Federal Safety Service) in June this yr – and, following a a number of months-long investigation, has now been formally charged with “excessive treason.”

    In April this yr, President Vladimir Putin signed a decree elevating the penalty for treason-related offenses to life imprisonment.

    Per Tass, Vechirko was born within the Ukrainian metropolis of Vinnytsia, however is now a resident of the Khabarovsk Territory with Russian citizenship.

    Vechirko is the primary Russian to be formally charged with sending crypto donations to the Armed Forces of Ukraine.

    The Ukrainian army has been interesting for token donations from worldwide crypto holders since shortly after the beginning of the battle.

    Legislation enforcement businesses confirmed that Moscow’s Lefortovo Courtroom additionally denied Vechirko bail, and dominated that he should stay in custody within the Lefortovo pre-trial detention middle for an additional three months forward of his trial.

    The FSB believes that Vechirko “used cryptocurrency” to “make transfers of his private funds via third events residing in Ukraine.”

    Russian FSB officers walk through a room.
    Russian FSB officers. (Supply: Kimbichlich [CC BY-SA 4.0])

    Will Russian Courtroom Convict ‘Ukraine Crypto Donor’ of Excessive Treason?

    Vechirko was described as “an worker of Daltransugol,” a coal-producing firm that has been hit with a raft of Western-led sanctions.

    The cash had been allegedly traced to “a [wallet] belonging to a international charitable basis” and had been allegedly used to “buy unmanned aerial automobiles, thermal imaging sights, ammunition, and medical uniforms.”

    The FSB says it’s nonetheless its “operational search actions” and “investigation” into the case are ongoing, a suggestion that additional particulars in regards to the donation stay unknown.

    It’s important, nonetheless, that Vechirko has been transferred to Moscow to face costs – a suggestion, maybe, that the federal government intends to make an instance of him.

    However Vechirko is probably not the final Russian to face related crypto-related treason costs: Earlier this month, a notable social media influencer nicknamed Bitmama was arrested on fraud charges in Moscow.

    Within the ensuing investigation, the influencer (actual identify Valeria Fedyakina) was accused of stealing her clients’ money and sending it to Ukraine-based charities.

    Fedyakina’s authorized workforce denies that she despatched cash to the Ukrainian army, as a substitute claiming that she helps Russia’s “particular army operation” and really desires to donate funds to the Russian armed forces.

    Earlier this yr, the mega-bank Sberbank claimed that over $5 million price of crypto had been despatched from Russian wallets to Ukraine-based recipients for the reason that begin of the battle.

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