June 4, 2019

Bank Secrecy Act violation results in $35,000 fine

In the first enforcement action ever against a peer-to-peer currency exchanger, and the first time a virtual currency exchanger has been fined for failing to file Currency Transaction Reports (CTRs), the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network has assessed a civil money penalty of $35,000 against Eric Powers.  On April 18, 2019, FinCEN announced that it had determined that Powers willfully violated the Bank Secrecy Act, 31 USC § 5311 et seq., 12 USC §§ 1829,  1951-1959, by failing to register as a money services business, failing to report suspicious transactions and currency transactions, and failing to maintain written policies or procedures to ensure compliance with the BSA. According to FinCEN, Powers processed multiple suspicious transactions without ever filing a Suspicious Activity Report, and over 200 currency transfers of more than $10,000 without filing any CTRs.  In addition to the $35,000 civil money penalty, Powers agreed to be barred from providing money transmission services in the future.

FinCEN news release