The U.S. Department of Justice restructures the National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Task Force to enhance the crackdown on cybercrime

Copy share

Recently, The U.S. Department of Justice announced the merger of its National Cryptocurrency Enforcement Task Force (NCET) into the Computer Crime and Intellectual Property Section (CCIPS) to enhance its expertise and efficiency in combating cybercrime.

Nicole M. Argentieri, the Principal Deputy Assistant Attorney General at the U.S. Department of Justice, stated that this measure aims to consolidate the expertise of the criminal division in various aspects of combating cybercrime and establish a unified office to address the increasingly complex and diversified criminal threats in the cryptocurrency field.

NCET, established in February of this year, is a specialized team led by Eun Young Choi, primarily responsible for investigating and prosecuting criminal activities involving the abuse of cryptocurrencies. This includes collaborating with the Money Laundering and Asset Recovery Section (MLARS) in investigating and prosecuting cryptocurrency exchanges facilitating money laundering. On the other hand, CCIPS is a department with over 40 attorneys primarily focused on handling cases related to computer intrusion, cyberattacks, and intellectual property infringement.

By merging NCET into CCIPS, the U.S. Department of Justice aims to achieve several objectives: Firstly, the number of attorneys in the criminal division capable of handling cryptocurrency criminal cases will increase by over double, allowing any CCIPS attorney to be assigned to handle NCET cases. Secondly, this merger grants the cryptocurrency work within the criminal division an equal status to the work on computer crime and intellectual property, giving the NCET director the authority to approve charging decisions and other steps in investigations and litigation. Thirdly, with the integration of NCET into CCIPS, the entire department's ability to track cryptocurrency, prosecute cases involving cryptocurrency crime, and seize legally forfeited cryptocurrencies will be enhanced.