Peter Schiff, a famous crypto critic, gold proponent, and money manager, has reached an agreement with officials to liquidate his Euro Pacific Bank in Puerto Rico.
Euro Pacific Bank, a boutique online bank operating in Puerto Rico, became a subject of an international investigation into its account holders in 2020.
At the time, the bank had $140 million with 8,000 depositors. Some depositors were suspected of tax evasion and money laundering using the accounts at the bank. The investigation, known as Operation Atlantis, and led by the United States and four other countries, was looking into the involvement and awareness of the bank in these activities.
In June, Euro Pacific Bank’s operations were put on hold by the authorities, citing “serious insolvency” affairs. Following the decision, the Commissioner of Financial Institutions (OCIF) of Puerto Rico held a press conference, stating that the conclusion [of whether Euro Pacific Bank assisted in their clients committing money laundering and tax evasion] “has not been made.”
According to Schiff’s statement, he is “not admitting to any legal wrongdoing, either on the part of the bank or me personally,” per the official statement.
The Bitcoin skeptic now has to liquidate the bank’s access and return 100% – $66.7 million – of deposits to their customers. Schiff will also have to pay $300,000 in fines, the New York Times cited the official settlement papers.
The money manager admitted that he was not at liberty to sell the bank, leaving the liquidation “the only feasible option available” since “continuing to own and operate the bank” was no longer “a financially viable option.”
Schiff also claimed that, as the result of this dispute, his reputation in banking became “tarnished.”
It was previously reported that the gold proponent was ready to accept Bitcoin in case the sale of the bank would have been approved by the authorities.
Schiff has been a prominent crypto critic, often engaging in public feuds online over the years. He keeps insisting that Bitcoin “is not a store of value.”
“It has no value to store, just a market price. You can’t store price. Before something can become money, it must first have underlying value,” he said in one of the Twitter conversations.
Ironically enough, Schiff’s son is enthusiastic about the crypto industry. Peter shared that Spencer sold all his “silver stocks” and “went all in on Bitcoin,” calling his son “brainwashed.”
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