The Portuguese police teamed up with Europol to create a counterfeit network that sold counterfeit currency to Bitcoin. For information of Sputnik News The police seized, in addition to printing machines, about 70,000 euros of counterfeit money.
According to the magazine, Manuel Mourato of the Portuguese police believes that the quality of counterfeit money is high:
In addition to holograms, the notes also contain imitation ink and watermarks. Tickets have many security features. It is one of the highest quality counterfeit confiscated in Europe.
The police arrested five people in total. The leader of the group was found and extradited to Colombia. As Sputniknews mentions in more detail, he controlled the production of flowers according to the situation of the orders. If orders are entered via a Darknet market, the rest of the team then produces the money in the Portuguese branch.
Bitcoin: The error of counterfeiters
Despite the quality of the "flowers", however, counterfeiters seemed to be less aware of darknet and cryptocurrency. So, they obviously paid for themselves in Bitcoin. However, they neglected the fact that the basic technology of the currency is transparent and provides only a pseudonym. In other words, it's easy to track cash flows in the blockchain – for things to be done secretly, the Bitcoin system is rather inappropriate.
Tickets still outstanding
Nevertheless, the group has reportedly succeeded in producing more than one million euros. These were finally in circulation in Germany, France, Spain and Portugal. Despite the discovery of the gang, it is likely that some notes are still in circulation:
Often, they are recognized only during the deposit. Normal transactions are easily lost notes. Those who recognize counterfeit notes are warned not to try to pass them on to another person because it is a crime. You must report to the authorities […].
warns the coordinator of the criminal investigation Luís Ribeiro Sputnik News,
Bitcoin & Co. in Portugal
Recently, it was announced that Bitcoin transactions and crypto-encrypted transactions in the European country were tax-exempt. The same goes for "extraction" of cryptocurrency. Portugal has a user-friendly cryptography policy that sets it apart from most European countries.