Criminals in Europe are Laundering $5.5 Billion of Illegal Cash Through Cryptocurrency, Says Europol

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Criminals in Europe are using cryptocurrencies to launder as much as $5.5 billion (£4 billion) in illegal money, according to the head of Europe’s policing agency.

Rob Wainwright, the director of Europol, estimated that around 4% of all criminal proceeds in Europe are being funnelled through currencies like Bitcoin — and he expects this figure to increase.

Europol’s standing estimate for the amount of illicit cash circulating in Europe is around £100 billion, Wainwright said. Using his 4% estimate for the amount funnelled via cryptocurrency gives a figure of £4 billion, or $5.5 billion.

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