Washington, August 13: US Department of Justice announced the dismantling of three terror financing cyber-enabled campaigns, involving al-Qassam Brigades, Hamas’s military wing, al-Qaeda, and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIS). Each group used cryptocurrency and social media to garner attention and raise funds for their terror campaigns. US authorities have seized millions of dollars, more than 300 cryptocurrency accounts, four websites and four Facebook pages all related to the criminal enterprise. Pakistan Remains Safe Haven for Terrorists, Took 'Modest Steps' to Counter Terror Financing: US Report.
“It should not surprise anyone that our enemies use modern technology, social media platforms and cryptocurrency to facilitate their evil and violent agendas. The Department of Justice will employ all available resources to protect the lives and safety of the American public from terrorist groups. We will prosecute their money laundering, terrorist financing and violent illegal activities wherever we find them,” said Attorney General William P Barr.
"Terrorist networks have adapted to technology, conducting complex financial transactions in the digital world, including through cryptocurrencies. IRS-CI special agents in the DC cybercrimes unit work diligently to unravel these financial networks. Today's actions demonstrate our ongoing commitment to holding malign actors accountable for their crimes," said Secretary of the Treasury Steven T. Mnuchin.
IRS-CI Cyber Crimes Unit (Washington, D.C.), HSI’s Philadelphia Office, and FBI’s Washington D.C., New York, and Los Angeles field offices are investigating the case. Assistant U.S Attorneys Jessi Camille Brooks and Zia M. Faruqui, and National Security Division Trial Attorneys Danielle Rosborough and Alexandra Hughes are litigating the case, with assistance from Paralegal Specialists Brian Rickers and Bria Cunningham, and Legal Assistant Jessica McCormick. Additional assistance has been provided by Chainalysis and Excygent.
The Department of Justice said that the funds forfeited with a connection to a state sponsor of terrorism may be directed to the US Victims of State Sponsored Terrorism Fund after the conclusion of the investigation.