British taxpayers are investigating an NFT fraud

Photo Credits : DepositPhotos

It is no news that money laundering stories are linked to digital assets, especially NFTs, but the news is that UK tax collectors have seized digital tokens as part of a tax fraud investigation.

The United Kingdom Tax Administration (HMRC), as part of an investigation into a fraudulent scheme of people and companies cheating on taxes, is the first in the world to register as confiscated property – an irreplaceable digital token on the blockchain, NFT. The investigation of the tax fraud included as many as 250 allegedly fake companies that “did business” with each other in a way that would ultimately avoid paying VAT. The total value of the tax fraud is set at around 1.9 million dollars, and three suspects were arrested this week.

NFT served to hide assets

Taxpayers say the organized group used sophisticated methods of hiding identities, using fake and stolen identities, VPNs, pre-paid mobile services, and similar methods, and issuing fake invoices to appear to be carrying out legitimate business activities. Among the methods of hiding cash flow was the purchase of NFT.

“The seizure of the first NFT serves as a warning to anyone who thinks they can use cryptocurrency to hide their money from HMRC,” said Nick Sharp, their deputy director for economic crime.

 “We are constantly adapting to new technologies to keep up with criminals and those who evade taxes or hide their property,” Sharp said.

In total, about 7000 dollars in cryptocurrencies and three digital works of art related to NFT were seized from this group, based on a court order. Their value has not been determined, and the investigation is continuing.

In other news, gamers, other than those who play games that earn cryptocurrencies like Axie Infinity, typically show contempt for cryptocurrencies in their community. One of the most common scenarios in recent months is that a manufacturer announces the integration of NFT into its games and a week, two later gives up because it provokes the anger of customers or gamers.

The most recent example is, EA whose director Andrew Wilson said three months ago that NFTs and blockchain gaming are the ‘future of the industry. Last week, during a revenue announcement, he turned the rhetoric 180 degrees and mentioned that EA ‘does not insist on crypto projects’.

Wilson’s comments came relatively shortly after Team17 – the company responsible for the $75 million Worms franchise – abandoned plans for NFT called MetaWorms. After the fans got mad, the company had no choice.