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Tallinn District Court annuls US cryptocurrency fraud extradition requests

Tallinn District Court.
Tallinn District Court. Source: Siim Lõvi /ERR

The Tallinn District Court on Wednesday annulled the decision to extradite two Estonian men charged with cryptocurrency fraud to the USA.

Last November, the Estonian National Criminal Police and USA's FBI arrested Sergei Potapenko and Ivar Turõgin on suspicion of cryptocurrency fraud and money laundering in a joint operation in Tallinn. 

They allegedly defrauded $575 million from hundreds of thousands of victims.

The U.S. Department of Justice submitted a written request to Estonia in September this year based on a treaty between the two countries.

The District Court annulled the decisions made by the Tallinn Administrative Court in October.

The district court also overturned the government's orders. It found the government had failed to investigate and consider important circumstances in the decision-making process, which could have influenced the decision to extradite the persons.

The court ordered the government to pay €46,365.30 to Turõgin, and €50,710 to Potapenko and awarded procedural costs of €7,000.

The decision can be challenged until December 11.

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Editor: Marko Tooming, Helen Wright

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