Two nominees to the U.S. Treasury Department have promised, if they are confirmed in their posts, to implement new regulations relating to cryptocurrency and money laundering. The two nominees made the pledges during their Senate nomination hearings yesterday.

Fast facts:

  • Brian Nelson, nominated for the post of Undersecretary for Terrorism and Financial Crimes, said he would prioritize “implementing pieces” of the Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2020, which grants the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network increased powers to regulate cryptocurrency.
  • A graduate of Yale Law School, Nelson worked with Vice President Kamala Harris when she was Attorney General of California. During that period they worked to combat transnational criminal organizations, dismantle human trafficking networks, and prevent federal and international money laundering. More recently, he has worked as Chief Legal Officer for the Los Angeles 2028 Olympic and Paralympic Games planning committee.
  • Elizabeth Rosenberg, nominee for Assistant Secretary for Terrorist Financing at the Treasury Department, said cryptocurrency-related crime would require international cooperation. She also said she would seek to ensure current AML regulatory requirements were “appropriate and consistent”.
  • Rosenberg currently serves as Counselor to the Deputy Treasury Secretary. Prior to that, she was Senior Advisor to the Assistant Secretary for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes, and then to the Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. She is also a former Senior Fellow and Director of the Energy, Economics and Security Program at the Center for a New American Security.
  • While acknowledging the potential of the technology, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen called the use of cryptocurrencies for illegal purposes a “growing problem” during her own confirmation hearing earlier this year.