The United States Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control has listed two crypto wallets believed to be connected to a Russian sanctions evasion network as Specially Designated Nationals.
On February 1st, the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced that it has added a Bitcoin and an Ether address to its list of sanctioned entities in an effort to combat global sanctions evasion.
The Treasury stated that full blocking sanctions would be imposed on 22 individuals, including a Russian national named Jonatan Zimenkov, who has access to both the Bitcoin and Ether wallet.
The US Treasury claims that Jonatan Zimenkov is the son of Igor Vladimirovich Zimenkov, a notorious arms dealer who operates a sanctions evasion network. The network is accused of providing technology to a Russian company after its invasion of Ukraine in 2022 and of supporting sanctioned Russian defence entities such as Rosoboronexport and Rostec.
OFAC stated that Igor Zimenkov was placed on the sanctions list under Executive Order 14024 for his involvement in the defence and related material sector of Russia's economy.
Jonatan Zimenkov was also included on the sanctions list under the same Executive Order for his assistance, sponsorship, or provision of financial, material, or technological support, goods, or services to Igor Zimenkov.
The Bitcoin address listed by the Treasury showed zero balance at the time of the announcement. The Ethereum address had no tokens either, but there were four transactions totalling around 5,463 ETH in early 2022, which amounted to over $16 million at that time.
The US Treasury appears to be increasing its efforts to include crypto wallets in its sanctions measures. The department previously prohibited US residents from using Tornado Cash mixer, which resulted in lawsuits from crypto advocacy organisations and investors.
Shashank is the founder of yMedia. He ventured into crypto in 2013 and is an ETH maximalist. Twitter: @bhardwajshash