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Daily fraud update: 14th February

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Alleged Indian foreign exchange fraud busted

A large-scale case of alleged forex fraud in India appears to have been busted by police in the local area.

Police in Mumbai are believed to have uncovered the alleged scam during an investigation.

The allegedly fraudulent firm in question, called Capstone Forex, has been targeted by the police’s  Enforcement Directorate on financial fraud.

It is understood that the firm has acquired a significant amount of cash through what were described by local press outlets as allegedly “shell companies”.

In total, it is accused of having acquired over 700 crore Indian rupees – a figure which is equivalent to over $98m or over £75m.

It is also accused of making foreign exchange purchases using counterfeit passports and also using fake airline tickets.

Trump government member hints at new regulations

 A member of US President Donald Trump’s government revealed this week that the country looks set to announce a range of new regulations pertaining to digital currencies.

Steven Mnuchin, who serves as the government’s treasury secretary, made the remarks on Wednesday during a session in front of the Finance Committee of the US Senate.

“We will be rolling out new regulations to be very clear on greater transparency so that law enforcement can see where the money is going and that this isn’t used for money laundering”, he said.

Mnuchin also appeared to indicate that the government would crack down on the use of so-called “secret” banking.

“We want to make sure that technology moves forward; on the other hand, we want to make sure cryptocurrencies aren’t used for the equivalent of old Swiss secret number banking”, he said.

The remarks from Mnuchin came after the Chair of the Federal Reserve Jerome Powell also spoke in front of Congress.

Powell was speaking in front of the Senate Banking Committee, and in his remarks, he claimed that Libra – which is Facebook’s proposed cryptocurrency – encouraged the Fed to research the possibility of launching a cryptocurrency of their own.

Powell used the opportunity to discuss what he claimed would be a number of advantages.

“The benefits would include perhaps greater financial inclusion, lower costs, more convenience”, he said.

“There’s a lot to weigh and a lot to work on there.”

“Every major central bank in the world right now is doing a deep dive on digital currencies, and we think it is our responsibility to be at the very forefront of knowledge and thinking about a central bank digital currency”, he was quoted as saying.

Powell was responding to a question from Bill Foster, who serves as a member of the House of Representatives for the 11th congressional district of Illinois.

The effect of Powell’s comments on the price of bitcoin was intense.

In its pair against the US dollar, for example, it was up by 4% at one stage to $10,200.