Michigan Bitcoin launderers plead guilty to multiple charges

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A visual representation of the digital Cryptocurrency, Bitcoin. (Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images)

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WLNS) – Two Michiganders and one man from Washington state pled guilty in a federal Bitcoin laundering case on Monday.

Christopher Allen Boden, 46 of Grand Rapids, Daniel Rayenold DeJager, 35 of Tacoma Washington and Leesa Beth Vogt, 37 of Grand Rapids have pled guilty to several financial crimes incolving Bitcoin.

Boden pled guilty to “operating an unlicensed money transmitting business, money laundering, and structuring deposits to evade financial institution reporting requirements.”

DeJager pled guilty to “conspiracy to operate an unlicensed money transmitting business and money laundering. “

Vogt pled guilty to “structuring while operating the unlicensed money transmitting business.”

According to court documents, the trio operated an unlicensed money transmitting business at “The Geek Group,” a nonprofit between March 2017 and December 2018.

According to the US Department of Justice, DeJager purchased bitcoin from registered storefronts, laundered it, and then gave it to Boden to sell. Boden and other staff at The Geek Group would then sell bitcoin to customers. They would then structure the deposits in a way to avoid detection and purchase more bitcoin.

The defendants sold more than $740,000 in bitcoin.

Court documents say that Boden sold to drug dealers and self-identified as a money launderer, saying that “people buy from [him] because he sold ‘clean’ bitcoin, instead of ‘dirty’ bitcoin that could be traced.”

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