The scandal surrounding the sanctioned crypto broker Suex is growing in Russia, where one of the co-founders of the OTC platform was fired from his chief position at a bank. Meanwhile, an anti-drug organization has referred the case to the Home Office and the central bank and asked the authorities to investigate Suex’s links to financial companies and a darknet market operating in the region.
Co-founder of Suex fired from MTS Bank, another quits job at Chatex
Russian entrepreneur and finance manager Vasily Zhabykin, one of the founders of troubled crypto broker Suex, has been fired from his leadership position at MTS Bank, where he led the innovative neo-banking project, Kommersant reported. Citing a source familiar with the matter, Russia’s leading business newspaper added that the dismissal was due to US sanctions imposed on the platform’s alleged money laundering operations.
The news comes after one of Zhabykin’s partners at Suex, co-owner Egor Petukhovsky, announced he was leaving the crypto-exchange bot Chatex, a company affiliated with Suex. In a Facebook post Released on Friday, Petukhovsky responded to what he called the “discreet media campaign” stating that neither he nor any affiliate had ever engaged in illegal activities.
“I intend to firmly defend my name in a lawsuit in the United States,” said the Suex co-founder.
In addition to Zhabykin and Petukhovsky, Ildar Zakirov, Maxim Subbotin, Maxim Kurbangaleev, who has denied a direct stake, and the Czech venture capitalist Tibor Bokor, who is said to be one of Suex’s executives along with Zhabykin, are associated with the cryptocurrency broker. The platform is registered in the Czech Republic as Suex OTC sro but reportedly operates from physical offices in the Russian Federation, including offices in the capital Moscow and Saint Petersburg.
Stopnarkotik urges Russian authorities to investigate Suex’s alleged partners, Exmo, Qiwi and Concord Bank
Meanwhile, the All-Russian Public Movement Stop narcotic has the Russian Central Bank and the Ministry of the Interior via alleged connections between Suex and Exmo, a major cryptocurrency exchange in Eastern Europe, the financial services company Qiwi, a leading payment provider in Russia, the CIS Countries and Ukraine-based Concord Bank.
An investigation by the organization, which is dedicated to combating the proliferation of narcotics in the country, also found that Suex was involved in money laundering for the region’s largest darknet market and drug trafficking platform, Hydra, which is estimated to be the only one in the Russian Federation annual sales of at least $ 1.5 billion.
According to Kommersant, Stopnarkotik has asked the Bank of Russia to review Suex, Exmo and Qiwi’s operations in Russia and consider blocking payments from Russian residents to the Ukrainian bank. It has also called on the Home Office to double-check all the facts and hold everyone involved accountable. The newspaper is aware of the official inquiries submitted to the two institutions.
Exmo denied allegations of involvement in Seux’s activities, stressing that Egor Petukhovsky was not a co-founder of the exchange and was never part of its management. The company noted that he has no family ties with Exmos founder Ivan Petukhovsky, although their last names coincide. Speaking to Forklog earlier this week, Exmo Development Director Maria Stankevich confirmed that Suex had made some of its first transactions on the exchange, but insisted that “there is nothing illegal about it”.
Qiwi has stated that the information provided by Stopnarkotik about its connections with the other companies and the Ukrainian bank is not true. The financial services group, which represents platforms such as Qiwi Kiosks, Qiwi Wallet and Qiwi Bank in Russia and the region, stressed that it operates under Russian law and does not engage in activities such as those described in the documents.
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