Venezuela overhauls national crypto department

Venezuela overhauls national crypto department

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Venezuela’s president Nicolás Maduro has Announced the reorganization of the National Superintendence of Cryptoactives, Sunacrip, according to decree issued on March 17.

A new board will lead the reorganization, headed by Anabel Pereira Fernández, a lawyer who served as president of the Fondo de Garantía de Depositos y Protección Bancaria (FOGADE), the Venezuelan version of the United States Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. (FDIC). Among the other directors are Héctor Andrés Obregón Pérez, Luis Alberto Pérez González, and Julio César Mora Sánchez.

Without providing any further details or specific reasons for the reorganization, the decree says that the board will plan the next steps for the crypto department. The Maduro administration claims that the measure is aimed at protecting the country’s citizens from the negative effects of economic sanctions, among other reasons.

The new board structure leaves out Joselit Ramírez, who has led the department since its creation in 2018. Ramírez was reportedly arrested on March 17 on corruption charges. according to local Venezuelan media. At the time of writing, Cointelegraph has not been able to confirm the information. Ramirez oversaw the country’s cryptocurrency Petro and crypto tax rules.

Related: Remittances Drive ‘Uneven, But Rapid’ Crypto Adoption in Latin America

In June 2020, the US added Ramirez to his most wanted list. The Homeland Security Investigations branch of US Immigration and Customs Enforcement has issued a reward of up to $5 million for any information leading to the capture of Petro’s supervisor.

At the time, authorities alleged that Ramírez had “deep political, social and economic ties” to suspected drug lords, including Tareck El Aissami, a former vice president of Venezuela.

Ramírez’s reward was the smallest among the alleged co-conspirators, with the US government offering $15 million for the capture of the country’s leader, Nicolás Maduro. Several other high-ranking officials, including El Aissami, face $10 million in rewards.