UN: USDT has become the main crypto asset for money laundering in Southeast Asia

In a recent report by the United Nations (UN), it has been revealed that the stablecoin USDT has emerged as the leading cryptocurrency for illicit activities such as money laundering and fraudulent schemes in Southeast Asia.

According to the report, organized crime has leveraged new technologies to create a parallel banking system, with the rise of unregulated online casinos and cryptocurrencies like USDT fueling the criminal ecosystem in the region.

The UN analysts have uncovered that USDT has been extensively utilized in various fraudulent schemes, including romance scams and a deceptive practice known as “pig butchering.” This scheme involves deceiving victims with the promise of quick and substantial financial gains.

The report also highlights that law enforcement agencies have successfully shut down numerous networks involved in the illicit transfer of funds into USDT. For example, Singaporean authorities dismantled a similar scheme last year, recovering $735 million that was stolen.

In another significant development, Tether, the issuer of USDT, disclosed its collaboration with the US Department of Justice and froze around $225 million linked to an international human trafficking ring operating in Southeast Asia. Tether has also announced voluntary cooperation with the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Recently, Tether took action against at least six addresses potentially associated with the Russian financial pyramid scheme known as Finico.