House Members call for briefing on recent seizure of crypto assets from terrorist groups

Representatives Josh Gottheimer (D-NJ) and Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo) asked the Trump administration this Monday for more information on the recent seizure of some major terrorist groups’ cryptocurrency assets.


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“It is vital that Members of the Subcommittee on National Security, International Development and Monetary Policy receive a briefing, at the appropriate classification level, on this action, the largest ever seizure of online terrorist financing, from the Department of Justice, the Department of the Treasury on this investigation,” Cleaver, the chairman of the House Financial Services Subcommittee on National Security and Gottheimer, a member of the subcommittee wrote, according to a news report by The Hill.

Additionally, the representatives asked the Treasury Department to brief the subcommittee on its efforts to prevent individuals with malicious intent from attacking the U.S. financial system.

“This will further inform the Subcommittee on what legislative actions we should be undertaking to provide regulators and law enforcement the proper resources and tools to continue to address the illicit use of cryptocurrency and disrupt terrorist organizations’ financial networks,” the House Democrats wrote.

In what was termed as the “largest-ever seizure of cryptocurrency in the terrorism context” in a statement released by the government two weeks ago, the federal government had seized funds stored in 300 bitcoin addresses owned by al Qaeda, ISIS and Hamas via the al-Qassam Brigades.

The three networks made use of “bitcoin-centric campaigns,” and also sold personal protective gear on social media in order to collect funds for the groups, as previously
reported by The Block.