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Prosecutors seek $8.6M from e-gold for alleged illegal transfers

Federal prosecutors are seeking about $8.6 million from a company that operated an illegal online money transmitting business that the government claims is tied to child pornography and financial crimes.

The government’s civil forfeiture complaint in the U.S. District Court in Baltimore targets e-gold Ltd., which enabled users to open an “e-gold account” and transfer the digital funds online. The government says the online, anonymously held accounts have facilitated the sale of child pornography, as well as credit card fraud, identity theft and the sale of stolen or non-existent goods on the Internet.

The company pleaded guilty in 2008 to operating an illegal money transmitting business. As part of the plea deal, the company agreed its electronic accounts were subject to civil forfeiture and agreed to identify any e-gold accounts that contained funds traceable to criminal activity.

The federal government said it has already seized more than $19 million during its investigation of e-gold Ltd.

Maryland U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein and David Beach of the U.S. Secret Service announced the filing of the complaint.