Cryptocurrencies

Bitcoin Jesus free again in Spain, despite US extradition request


Roger Ver, an early investor in Bitcoin, is at the center of conflicting international interests. The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has charged him with multiple crimes, including fraud and tax evasion.

He was arrested in Spain, but the Spanish court released Ver on bail, despite extradition requests from the American authorities.

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Appeal against release rejected

According to a article from Bloomberg Spanish authorities arrested Ver at the end of April. He was released on May 17 after paying a bail of 150,000 euros.

As a condition, Ver surrendered his passport, stayed in Spain and reported to court every two days. The prosecutor appealed against his release, but the appeal was rejected two weeks later.

The US DOJ accuses Roger Ver, also known as ‘Bitcoin Jesus’, of acquiring Bitcoin for himself and his companies since 2011, which made him a significant fortune.

Ver allegedly failed to report capital gains and pay taxes on his Bitcoin holdings, despite selling Bitcoins for approximately 240 million euros in 2017. The indictment alleges that Ver hid these transactions from his accountant to avoid taxes.

Long arm of the US tax authorities

In 2014, Roger Ver renounced his American nationality and became a citizen of St. Kitts and Nevis. Despite this, he was still required to pay taxes on his global assets, including his Bitcoin holdings, under US law.

The indictment alleges that Ver provided false information to his legal representatives and appraisers, underestimating the value of his companies and Bitcoin holdings. This led to him filing false tax returns, which allowed him to avoid his tax obligations.

US extradition requests

The American authorities want Ver to be extradited to try him for tax fraud. The DOJ claims that Ver at least $48 million owes taxes on his Bitcoin transactions and that he has undervalued his assets.

Jaime Campaner, Roger Ver’s legal advisor, says Ver was in contact with US authorities through his lawyers in California. He emphasized that Ver’s arrest seemed unnecessary given his cooperation.

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