Former Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith was sentenced to prison and fined US$100,000 for violating international sanctions against North Korea by speaking at a cryptocurrency conference in the Hermit Kingdom in April 2019.

See related article: North Korea hacked US$400M of crypto in 2021, says Chainalysis

Fast facts

  • At the conference, Griffith explained blockchain technology’s use in money laundering to evade sanctions, and its benefits in nuclear arms negotiations with the U.S.
  • Violations against the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA) can carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison.
  • Blockchain forensics firm Chainalysis said that North Korean hackers stole almost US$400 million worth of crypto in 2021.

See related article: North Korea refutes crypto hack allegation, claims the US made it up