New York couple accused of laundering US$4.5 billion (RM19.7 billion) in cryptocurrency tied to the 2016 hack of digital currency exchange Bitfinex. They are still negotiating a possible plea deal while reviewing more than 1.1 gigabytes of evidence in the case, prosecutors said.
Due to appear in a federal court in Washington this coming Friday, Ilya “Dutch” Lichtenstein, 34, and his wife, Heather Morgan, 32, self-proclaimed as “Crocodile of Wall Street”.
Federal prosecutors asked to delay the hearing until Aug. 2 in a court filing on Monday, US Memorial Day, citing “discussions regarding possible resolutions of the case short of trial” and the need for the defendants to review “voluminous financial records” turned over by the government.
In February, Lichtenstein and Morgan were arrested and charged with a criminal complaint of conspiring to launder 119,754 bitcoin stolen after a hacker in 2016 broke into Bitfinex and took off with more than 2,000 unauthorized transactions.
US Justice Department officials said the transactions at the time were valued at US$71 million in bitcoin. However with the rise in the currency’s value, the value reached US$4.5 billion at the time of their arrest.
Known as rap singer “Razzlekhan,” a pseudonym that Morgan said on her website referred to Genghis Khan “but with more pizzazz.”
Morgan was released with house arrest while Lichtenstein is being held in jail without bond.