Suspicious money laundering reports in connection with cryptocurrencies are the order of the day in Germany. This mainly affects crypto investors who would like to convert their cryptocurrencies into fiat currencies (particularly, euros and U.S. dollars).
This type of suspicious activity report on the part of banks and financial service providers is associated with considerable negative consequences for the investor. Transactions can be temporarily put on hold by a money laundering suspicion report, even blocking the account is possible.
The German Money Laundering Act (Geldwäschegesetz, GwG) obliges, among others, credit institutions, i.e. banks as well as service providers that facilitate the exchange of cryptocurrencies into fiat currencies and vice versa, to submit a suspicious money laundering report immediately in certain cases.
The decisive factor for a reporting obligation is not only the amount of the transaction or the value of the cryptocurrency. The obligation to report already exists if there is a suspicion that
- the asset originates from illegal activity,
- the asset or a transaction is related to terrorist financing or
- the contracting party does not disclose whether it is acting for a beneficial owner.
The money laundering suspicion report is reported to the Financial Intelligence Unit and results in the temporary freezing of the respective transaction.
As a rule, the bank or financial service provider will only complete the transaction - if at all - once the Financial Intelligence Unit or the public prosecutor's office has approved the execution of the transaction.
This, however, is not the only unpleasant consequence of a suspected money laundering report. The authority has the possibility to impose a warning fine on crypto investors who are liable for an unfounded suspicion.
Whereas if the authority considers the suspicious money laundering report to be well-founded, this can lead to a considerable financial and criminal burden for crypto investors. On the one hand, a permanent blocking of the account is often to be expected. On the other hand, the authority has the possibility to initiate criminal proceedings based on the suspicion of money laundering.
In order to invalidate the indications of a suspicious activity report and thus also eliminate more serious consequences, a convincing certificate of origin for the cryptocurrencies is required. With such a certificate of origin, a crypto investor can prove the origin of their crypto investments.
Ideally, the investor shall submit this certificate to their bank before the transaction is carried out. At the latest, however, after a request from the bank, the investor ought to be able to provide a certificate of origin in a timely manner.
- In order to create a valid certificate of origin, a complete and legally secure processing of all crypto data is indispensable.
- Admittedly, practice shows that most crypto investors can, at most, often provide an up-to-date overview of assets.
- This is better than nothing, but, in most cases, it is no substitute for a review of the transaction history, which is often considerably hampered due to incomplete data.
To ensure that this circumstance does not lead to their downfall, we offer solutions for the legally compliant and complete processing of all relevant data using professional software. In doing so, we primarily address possible gaps in the history and missing data.
By being able to cleanly process the transaction history, even if data is missing, one significantly minimizes the risk of a suspected money laundering report and the associated negative consequences.
Fortunately, a complete certificate of origin is not always required. Many clients simply need a genuine asset confirmation as proof of their crypto assets, e.g. to present to authorities or to banks or other lenders in connection with the granting of loans. We will be happy to quickly and bindingly determine the current value of your crypto investments and create a corresponding asset confirmation.
- Do you plan to exchange your crypto profits into fiat currency and receive a payout?
- Are you suspected of money laundering, which has been cause for the freezing of the transaction or the blocking of an account?
- Have criminal proceedings been initiated against you on suspicion of money laundering?
Our experts will gladly assist you with your concerns and questions with our expertise in crypto tax law, money laundering law and criminal law. We support crypto investors with, among other things,
- the creation of certificates of origin (complete, comprehensive and legally secure processing of all data) so that your transactions can be traced without any compilations,
- communication with your bank so that no suspicious activity report arises in the first place,
- communication with the authorities (Customs Office/Financial Intelligence Unit, the public prosecutor's office and respective tax office) in the event of suspected money laundering in order to avoid more serious consequences for you and
- representation in criminal proceedings as your defence lawyer.
Would you like advice on the subject of certificates of origin and asset verification for your six-figure crypto investment in Germany? Our experienced consultants for crypto certificates of origin are gladly prepared to support you in this.
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