Weekly Update #26: Crypto Criminals And Brexit Reaction

Dominik Olech
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Another week has ended, alongside with the January as well. Let’s see what interesting the last 7 days have brought.

The first month of 2020 is already behind us – recently, we gave a short summary of those days on our website. But what about the last week of January itself? You will find out from our newest weekly update!

The bull run is on

Let’s start with the most pleasant news first. Apparently, January was an excellent month for the Bitcoin since its price in the last week of this month has risen up above $9,000 and currently keeping the cap of $9,300. It is the best performance of this leading cryptocurrency (according to market capitalization) since the last summer. 

What has caused this outstanding Bitcoin’s situation? Opinions are divided on that matter. Some point on the potential influence of recent events, like the USA-Iran tensions or the breakout of coronavirus. Others imply that the price growth might be an outcome of the long term improvement of Bitcoin’s performance. Nevertheless, it is a good time for Satoshi Nakamoto’s currency.

Justin Sun sued by ex-employees

We have already covered the case in Sunday’s article, but it is undoubtedly worthy of a mention in the Weekly Update too. Justin Sun, the founder of a TRON Foundation, got sued by former employees of BitTorrent (which was acquired by TRON two years ago). Both plaintiffs accuse Sun (and Cong Li, chief of engineering in the company) for the hostile work environment, discrimination and the violation of the labor code. Sun denied all accusations.

Vinnik charged after the extradition

Alexander Vinnik, allegedly involved in the attack on the Mt. Gox exchange and money laundering in BTC-e, is charged by the French authorities. The full list of his crimes, besides said financial exploits, consists of conspiracy, extortion, and harming automatic data-processing systems.

Vinnik was extradited to France from Greece after his medical condition suffered largely in effect of his hunger strike in Greek prison. As for now, he is hospitalized in Hotel Dieu Hospital in Paris. And apparently, he has a long road ahead – according to the Cointelegraph, after a trial in France, he is going to be sent back to Greece, from where he will be extradited to the USA, and finally, to his home Russia.

Griffith pleads not guilty 

The last “law” case in this week concerns Virgil Griffith – a former Ethereum developer who got charged with providing the North Korean regime with valuable information that may facilitate evading USA sanctions. Griffith pleads himself not guilty for said charges during the latest meeting in courthouse. 

Moreover, his defense attorney, Brian Klein, believed that other participants of the unlucky (at least for Griffith) blockchain conference in North Korea should have been interviewed for more evidence in the case. The American government has time to a continuance until March 17 to gather more evidence, and then the case will continue.

Brexit used for crypto advertisement 

Last week, the United Kingdom’s membership in the European Union had officially ended. Of course, the completion of the Brexit process has caused many reactions around the world. And the cryptocurrency industry has added its own input too. Some blockchain-related firms have used the opportunity for advertisement purposes. Ledger, a French company which specializes in hardware wallets, has slightly changed the famous Brexit slogan:

Also, Bitpanda, an Austrian cryptocurrency exchange, has referred to the Brexit. Eric Demuth, the CEO of the company, said that the advertisement is set to provoke people about the possible outcome of their voting decision. We should remember that both firms are located in the countries which still are the members of the European Union – so this attitude is not surprising for them in the current situation.

And that’s all for the crypto news this week. As you can see, there are many ongoing cases in courts related to cryptocurrency developers. But probably the most important news for every crypto fan is the Bitcoin’s price. So far, so good – let’s hope that the positive trend will continue for a long time.

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