Japan may be one of the countries in the world that has the most hardcore stance on regulating cryptos but it does not seem like this is enough to curb money laundering using cryptos for once and for all.
Up until now, Japanese crypto exchanges have reported 5,944 cases of suspicious transactions involving cryptocurrencies. These transactions were all made in the first 10 months of the year.
While this may be seen as a huge number, it is important to know that this is only the equivalent of 1.7% of all the money laundering cases in the country, a number which is far higher: 340,000.
The main argument that you simply do not need cryptos for money laundering is that, while the number presented a dramatic increase from the 669 cases that we have seen in 2017, which is normal, considering that cryptos were only starting to get famous then, the number is pretty much insignificant when compared to non-crypto ways of laundering money.
Jiji Press has reported that the Japanese National Police Agency has indicated that the number may be bigger now mostly because more people are reporting, though. Theft and money laundering always existed, the police affirmed, but part of the reason why the cases are appearing now is that the police are doing something for people to denounce these crimes.
The Next Web’s Hard Fork has also reported on this story and affirmed that one of the main problems that people are having with cryptos is that people are using overseas login accounts despite being Japanese, which makes things harder for the police.
Japan Against Tax Evaders
Despite all the difficulties, the government is set on getting the tax evaders and making them pay what they need. The country is systematically going after them and anyone who earned more than $1,700 USD in a single year trading cryptos and did not pay will be prosecuted.
The exchanges have to comply with the law to maintain their licenses, as they will lose it if the government discovers that they are aiding the tax evaders, so Japan has some powerful if unwillingly allies on its side because of how the regulation works.
Fortunately, money laundering using cryptos does not seem to be such a huge problem now, which is good and, with these measures from the government, it looks like it will never be.