RELEASE: Gottheimer: Feds Must Probe Bitcoin Transfers to Alt-Right Extremists Prior to Capitol Attacks

Jan 17, 2021
Press

Demands to know: Did foreign Bitcoin transfers fund the failed insurrection?

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Congressman Josh Gottheimer (NJ-5) called on the Department of Justice and federal agencies to redouble investigation efforts into the reported single $520,000+ bitcoin transfer to multiple alt-right groups and extremist personalities leading into the deadly failed insurrectionist attacks on the U.S. Capitol. 

Federal agencies are currently investigating a transfer of $522,000 worth of bitcoin to twenty-two different wallets belonging to several alt-right groups and extremists one month before the January 6, 2021 attack. The largest donation — of approximately $250,000 — went to a far-right extremist internet troll who was reported to be present at the initial January 6 Washington, D.C. rally and seen outside the U.S. Capitol as the riot began.

“In the wake of the deadly attack on the U.S. Capitol, Americans deserve to know if more than half a million dollars’ worth of bitcoin helped fund the failed insurrection. Are foreign entities paying far-right extremists to try to overthrow the U.S. government? Are there other cryptocurrency transfers to extremist groups we don’t yet know about?” asked Congressman Josh Gottheimer, a member of the House Financial Services Committee and Homeland Security Committee, today. “We know this isn’t an isolated incident. We know other terrorist actors and foreign groups use cryptocurrency to finance their attacks. Our federal agencies and the Department of Justice need to actively redouble their investigation and immediately brief Congress to help get to the bottom of this.”

Gottheimer is the lead sponsor of the bipartisan Freezing Assets of Suspected Terrorists and Enemy Recruits (FASTER) Act, to give law enforcement the capability to freeze the assets of all domestic terrorists when a suspect is arrested by federal law enforcement. It also implements a one-of-a-kind National Homegrown Terrorism Incident Clearinghouse for all levels of law enforcement to collect and share information on incidents of homegrown, lone-wolf terrorism and violent extremism — to help investigate and thwart future attacks.

Gottheimer is also the lead sponsor of bipartisan legislation — the Online Terrorism Prevention Act — to require regular disclosure of the presence of designated Foreign Terrorist Organizations on social media websites, and to impose financial and criminal penalties for social media companies that fail to eliminate terrorist content from their platforms. 

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