Now, like Europe as a whole, Italy is worried about illegal activities related to money laundering through bitcoins.
In 2017, the cryptocurrency startup Eidoo, founded by the Italians, settled in a building in Switzerland, which was arrested as the property of the well-known criminal group Ndrangheta.
Eidoo Sagl has rented the property – for office use – in Via Motta No. 10 in Chiasso in 2017, without being aware that the property had previously been seized by the authorities years earlier, as part of an investigation into the use of funds of illegal origin for real estate investments. Eidoo has not been in any way involved in that investigation, which dates back to 2014. Moreover, Eidoo was only one of many companies that have their offices at this property, so any attempt to link the activities of Eidoo with those of the previous owner of the property and with the investigation that affected that property is absolutely misleading
One of the owners of this property, Oliver Camponovo, was sentenced by a Swiss court to 3 years in prison for participating in the laundering of gang Giuseppe Mott, who once organized an unregulated ICO for 27 million to finance his company. This is the largest amount ever collected by Italian cryptocurrency startups.
However, according to the Anti-Mafia Commission, a significant part of this bitcoin funding came from people connected to Ndrangheta.
According to Eidoo statement:
it is worth noting that no civil or criminal proceedings – not even at the level of investigation – nor any checks for irregularities by the supervisory authorities, have ever been initiated nor are currently pending against Eidoo, its managers, directors and shareholders;
in relation to the activities of the Camponovo family, mentioned in the article, Eidoo cannot express itself in this regard, as our Company has no link either with these activities or with the Camponovo family (Mr Camponovo was in the past a tax consultant for a company of our group, but such collaboration has not existed for some time);
The lack of regulation
Currently, neither in Italy nor in Europe has any regulation prohibiting the laundering of mafia operations using Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies.
“We cannot exclude that someone from the mafia has purchased our tokens, which are vouchers for using start-up services in the future,” an Eidoo representative explains, “but it would be risky and stupid to use Eidoo when it’s easier to use the services of foreign websites.”
National Prosecutor for the fight against mafia and terrorism Federico Cafiero de Rajo confirmed that Ndrangheta was going to pay in bitcoin for Brazilian cocaine, but the bandits could not agree, because Brazilian drug dealers were not ready for such transactions.
However, Nicola Morra, president of the Anti-Mafia Commission, said in local news:
“Mafia has long become a professional in the use of technologies such as bitcoin.”