• BTC Mixing CEO Larry Harmon could spend 20 years in jail for money laundering.
• Harmon used the dark web to hide crypto operations from regulators.
A few hours ago, the Helix CEO, Larry Dean Harmon, pleaded guilty to money laundering using cryptocurrencies. The defendant used the Helix mixer for money laundering via the Darknet. According to local media, Harmon laundered around $200 million in cryptocurrencies along with other products involved.
The executive faces a sentence of up to 20 years in prison and must pay a fine of $500,000 or double the amount involved in the scheme. If the fine is paid, Harmon will be released with supervision for three years and removed immediately from his position in the company.
Harmon used BTC Helix mixer for money laundering
From 2014 to 2017, users had the privilege of sending their BTC to other clients without showing their sending source. The Helix CEO also enabled Grams, a Darknet search system that users used. This dark web search extension kept crypto transactions from being seen by regulatory authorities.
The Helix mixer worked with some crypto platforms such as Cloud9, AlphaBay, and Evolution, accused of laundering with BTC. Bitcoin mixer moved about 350000 tokens among clients valued at over $300 million in three years. A lot of BTC came from the dark web for drug trafficking or money laundering between anonymous business people.
Harmon admits that he understood the illegality of the Helix mixer driving drug smuggling and other crimes. The entrepreneur also created the DropBit crypto wallet and was even the Coin Ninja CEO while trading the mixer.
Harmon pays significantly for his crimes
After pleading guilty, the businessman lost about 4,400 Bitcoin, valued at over $200 million. Despite all, there is still no exact date set for the announcement of Harmon’s official sentence.
In previous months the executive had claimed that BTC was not a real currency as a defense for his actions. Judge Beryl Howell, who addressed the case, dismissed Harmon’s argument and sentenced him on various charges.
The FBI, the cybercrime agency, and the police force in Belize had begun investigations of Harmon since the Helix mixer was running. It was till 2020 that the authorities had enough evidence to apprehend the businessman for using a BTC mixer without registration.