New Jersey Man Admits Operating Illegal Bitcoin Exchange
NEWARK, N.J. – A Monmouth County, New Jersey, man today admitted operating an illegal bitcoin exchange, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.
William Green, 53, of Wall, New Jersey, pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to Count 1 of an indictment charging him with operating an unlicensed money transmitting business.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:
From August 2017 through February 2019, Green operated a website called “Destination Bitcoin.” Through the website and various referrals, Green received money from members of the public through cash, wire transfers into bank accounts controlled by Green, and online payment processors. Green then converted the funds to bitcoin and transferred the bitcoin to bitcoin wallet addresses provided by the customers. Green charged the customers a fee for this service.
Federal law provides that any person who owns or controls a money transmitting business shall register the business (whether the business is licensed as a money transmitting business in any state) with the Secretary of the Treasury. Green admitted today that he knew he was required to register his business with the Secretary of the Treasury and that he failed to do so.
The unlicensed money transmitting charge to which Green pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for Aug. 10, 2021.
Acting U.S. Attorney Honig credited special agents of IRS – Criminal Investigation, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Michael Montanez, and special agents of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Jason J. Molina, with the investigation leading to today’s guilty plea.
The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Anthony P. Torntore and Matthew Feldman Nikic of the U.S. Attorney’s Cybercrime Unit in Newark.