William Green, of New Jersey, today admitted operating an illegal bitcoin exchange, Acting U.S. Attorney Rachael A. Honig announced.
Green pleaded guilty by videoconference before U.S. District Judge Kevin McNulty to Count 1 of an indictment charging him with operating an unlicensed money transmitting business.
According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court, from August 2017 through February 2019, Green operated a website called “Destination Bitcoin.” Through the website and various referrals, Green received money from members of the public through cash, wire transfers into bank accounts controlled by Green, and online payment processors.
Green then converted the funds to bitcoin and transferred the bitcoin to bitcoin wallet addresses provided by the customers. Green charged the customers a fee for this service.
Under Federal law, any person who owns or controls a money transmitting business has to register the business (whether the business is licensed as a money transmitting business in any state) with the Secretary of the Treasury. Green admitted today that he knew he was required to register his business with the Secretary of the Treasury and that he failed to do so.
The unlicensed money transmitting charge to which Green pleaded guilty carries a maximum potential penalty of five years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Sentencing is scheduled for August 10, 2021.