Putin’s Counselor: Accepting Bitcoin Payments Unacceptable, a Crime

In adding to the recent stance taken by Russian regulators and official authorities, Russian president Putin’s counselor has reportedly stated that accepting bitcoin in Russia is “a crime”.

Newly appointed counsel and advisor on the internet German Klimenko, has reportedly claimed that accepting bitcoin as a payment instead of Russian rubles, is unacceptable and is a crime.

The seemingly matter-of-fact comments was made in an interview with Russian online news publication Lenta.ru.

The comments from the interview were translated and revealed by Russian bitcoin news outlet Forklog. An excerpt from the interview had Klimenko say:

Bitcoin is not the first one, there are other settlement means. Accepting bitcoin as a payment for anything is inacceptable because it is a crime.

[This is] just because payments within the Russian Federation are accepted in rubles.

Klimenko also echoed what is now becoming a consensus among authorities in Russia in that bitcoin or ‘money surrogates’ can be a threat to the economy. Furthermore, the internet advisor to Putin claimed that other countries around the world will put a stop to Bitcoin when it becomes too big or “critical.”

No state in the world, while watching it in homeopathic (insifignicant?t) doses  with pleasure, but when it becomes critical, everyone will certainly ban it [bitcoin],” Klimenko added.

Earlier this week, the Russian Finance Ministry continued to push for amendments in the Criminal Code by proposing a two-year prison sentence or a fine of up to 500,000 rubles.

Klimenko was appointed as the Russian president’s counsel and advisor on the internet, having officially agreed to take up the job late last year. In Feb 2015, he was deemed the head of the Institute of Development of the Internet. The Institute is currently seen as the mediator to bring cooperation between technology companies and the Russian state.

Notably, Klimenko is a proponent for regulation of the Internet, as documented across several interviews tracked by Russian news outlet Meduza, after he accepted his position.

Now the Internet is flooded with money, and criminals, and terrorists. Of course, all this needs to be regulated.

Credit to Forklog for the reveal and translation.

Featured image from Shutterstock.

Last modified (UTC): February 6, 2016 7:50 AM

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Samburaj Das @sambdas

Samburaj is the Editor for CCN, among the earliest and foremost publications covering blockchain, cryptocurrency and financial technology news. He has authored over 1,500 articles for CCN and is invested in Bitcoin. Email him samburaj(@)ccn.com or find him barely tweeting @sambdas

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