The police enforcement from Portugal has recently disrupted a counterfeit money network that operated on the dark web. The criminals used to sell fake cash notes in exchange for Bitcoin and other cryptos.
According to the Portuguese police, the operation lasted two years and produced over one million EUR in fake notes that circulated in at least four countries: Portugal, Spain, France and Germany. This was the second-largest group of Europe at the time. There are no indications whether the notes made it to other countries as well.
Europol assisted the Portuguese police in this criminal investigation and affirmed that a total of five people were arrested for the crime. According to the official statement, the counterfeit notes were advertised on sites based on the dark web and the deals were made on encrypted chat platforms.
During the arrest, the police were able to seize 1,833 counterfeit notes, which were worth around $70,000 EUR. Objects that were used in order to create the fake notes were also apprehended by the police during the operation. These included computers, holographic stickers, ultraviolent ink and printers.
Selling fake money on the dark web is not really something uncommon. There are several black markets around the world in which people can buy illegal goods and most of the time people use cryptocurrencies because they are harder to track than bank deposits. Obviously, they also leave a track, unless you use a privacy coin such as Monero, so it is dangerous to use them.