Chinese law enforcement officials have detained 11 suspected money launderers using a central bank digital currency, Digital Yuan.
The Xinmi City Public Security Service reported that recently Anti-Fraud Center and the Zhengzhou Public Security Bureau, have identified a criminal group that has used government digital currency to launder money.
According to officials of the Xinmi Public Security Bureau, the group first deceived one of the residents of Xinmi province was cheated for 200,000 Yuan (about $32,000) by impersonating it as a tech support team. The group then utilized the digital Yuan wallet to launder money and funnel it out of the country, investigators discovered.
The police later arrested the 26-year-old suspect from Fujian province, following an investigation, 11 individuals connected to the case were arrested and will be arraigned in a criminal trial.
Based on the findings of the investigation, authorities say that the group made use of the digital yuan platform to conceal funds, by sending the funds to an international fraud group operating in Cambodia. According to officials, the group was able to exploit the recently introduced CBDC wallets in order to avoid being arrested.
Although cryptocurrency use is prohibited in China, the digital Yuan is accepted in large Chinese cities. In October 2021, approximately 140 million individuals in China were registered users of digital Yuan wallets.
Law enforcement agencies acknowledged that although the state digital currency was intended to combat money laundering, terrorist financing, and suppression of other criminal activities, it has not yet been able to solve these problems.
China is pushing ahead with testing its state digital currency to launch by the 2022 Olympics. Two months ago, a full-scale test of the state digital currency began in the city of Sinai with 6 million users. In August, Chinese banks began exploring the potential of the state digital currency for insurance and investment. In the same month, China announced that it intends to launch an international settlement network for mobile payments in Digital Yuan.