Japanese Authorities May Allow the Confiscation Of Stolen Crypto Assets

Japan’s Ministry of Justice intends to revise the Organized Crime Asset Forfeiture Act to include a provision for the forfeiture of cryptocurrencies.

The revision of the Organized Crime and Proceeds of Crime Control Act (1999) will allow law enforcement and courts to take control of crypto assets used in criminal activities.

According to the Yomiuri Shimbun, the Ministry of Justice must first negotiate with the Legislative Council on this issue. At the same time, some details will need to be clarified, such as how law enforcement officials can obtain the criminal’s private keys.

Negotiations with the Legislative Council could begin in July, according to Jiji Press.

Since the law under discussion regarding the confiscation of funds/assets of organized crime does not explicitly set out any procedure for dealing with illegally acquired cryptocurrencies, there is a concern that criminals may continue their illegal activities.

In its current form, the law only specifies that physical property, monetary and movable assets, such as machines, vehicles, tools and consumables, are subject to confiscation. Cryptocurrency does not fit into any of these categories.

Once the details are clarified, the amendment to the law must be approved by the cabinet and then signed by the parliament, and may not meet with much resistance, given the nature of such a proposal.

Earlier, the Japanese parliament passed a law banning the issuance of stablecoins by non-banks in order to reduce systemic risks and provide stronger consumer protection.

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