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UK House of Lords Advances Economic Crime Bill to Strengthen Crypto Regulation

Legislative progress aims to enhance governmental scrutiny of cryptocurrencies associated with illicit activities

Sun, 09 Jul 2023, 06:08 am UTC

Within the grandeur of the United Kingdom's Parliament, the House of Lords, the upper chamber, is making notable progress towards enforcing a new piece of legislation. This move is set to increase the governmental power to scrutinize cryptocurrencies potentially linked to unlawful actions.

The Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill, initially introduced in September 2022, was subject to its third round of inspection by lawmakers on July 4. This legislative piece is instrumental in consolidating the power of law enforcement agencies to proactively challenge crypto-related financial crimes.

While the most recent evaluation of the bill by the House of Lords did not bring forth any changes specifically focused on the enforcement of crypto regulations, the lawmakers described the suggestions put forth as mere "tidying up" amendments or minor modifications.

An iteration of the bill dated June 27 showcased amendments that give authorities expanded latitude to confiscate and recover crypto assets. It also underscored the government's jurisdiction over digital assets that are slated for uses relating to terrorism or for other equivalent reasons. Prior to acquiring the royal stamp of approval to make it official, all changes to the bill will be subject to careful consideration by lawmakers.

Earlier this year in March, the U.K. government articulated its intent to fortify regulations on cryptocurrencies as a means to curb their unlawful use. This was outlined as a part of their economic crime strategy for 2023 through 2026. Furthermore, lawmakers expressed an intention to pass the Economic Crime and Corporate Transparency Bill by the end of 2023. They also plan to collaborate with various agencies to implement the Travel Rule laid out by the Financial Action Task Force.

On a related note, the House of Lords also scrutinized the Financial Services and Markets Bill in its third reading on June 19. This bill, which was formally made law on June 29, is meant to foster the adoption of crypto assets in the country.

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