Russian authorities are considering punishing Bitcoin buyers with fines $ 7,000 or imprisonment
According to the crypto publication Forklog, the Russian government – Ministry of Economic Development – is moving to criminalize Bitcoin transactions by proposing new legislation controlling the digital currencies.
Russia updated law draft for digital currency such as Bitcoin
Thus, Russia came up with a punishment of up to 2 million rubles and seven years in jail for the illegal use of digital assets and currencies. Some say the proposed law amounts to a total ban on cryptocurrencies.
The amendments proposed 50,000 rubles (around $ 706) to 500,000 rubles ($ 7,060) fine to any individual and a penalty of up to 2 million rubles ($ 28,240) to legal entities for organizing illegal circulation in digital currencies or involvement in the issuance of digital assets. For violating the payments norms, the individuals will be penalized with 20,000 rubles (almost $ 282) to 200,000 ($ 2,820) rubles and for legal entities this fine is from 100,000 ($ 1,412) rubles to 1 million rubles ($ 14,120).
Besides the large fines, Russia’s government can also put the involved parties under imprisonment for up to 7 years, depending on the amount of involved digital currencies and the damage to the country’s financial system.
The proposed laws primarily touch the administrative and criminal liability for violation of rules involved in the Bitcoin or cryptocurrency transactions. Though the categorization of digital currencies in Russia is not exactly clear, many institutions see them as property.
The latest proposal also clarified them as property and proposed prohibition on their issuance and circulation within the Russian territory. If enforced as laws, this will prohibit any individual or organization to carry out any operations in digital currencies. This will include payments in cryptocurrencies for goods or services, or exchange of digital currencies.
In all the cases the involved cryptocurrencies will be confiscated by the authorities. The only way Russian citizens or entities can hold cryptocurrencies is by declaring it to the authorities.
This came when major cryptocurrency exchanges including Binance are entering the Russian market, calling a progressive stance of the country’s leaders towards crypto.
Yuri Pripachkin, the head of the Russian Association of Cryptoeconomics and Blockchain (RACIB), stated:
“If the law is passed, it would mean a total ban on crypto in Russia. Furthermore, it will drive Russian-based crypto companies to other former Soviet countries, such as Ukraine, Belarus, and others.”
Earlier this week, Alexey Guznov, the Bank of Russia’s legal department director, told Interfax News Agency that legalizing cryptocurrency operations comes with significant problems with things such as financial stability, the prevention of money-laundering, and consumer protection.
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