Unfortunately, it has been over half a year since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine, after which harsh sanctions were imposed on Russia, which continues to this day. Understandably, many are trying to circumvent these sanctions, and the most logical option for many is cryptocurrencies. In addition, the latest research has shown that pro-Russian groups using the encrypted messaging app Telegram are offering people ways to send funds to fund Russian-affiliated groups and support their training in locations near the border with Ukraine.
“Of course, there’ll be more. But will it be billions of dollars? Highly unlikely.”
As of September 22, these pro-Russian groups had raised $400,000 using cryptocurrencies. One of these groups is believed to be Task Force Rusich, which the US Treasury Department describes as a “neo-Nazi paramilitary group that has fought alongside the Russian military in Ukraine.” We also learned that the Novorossia Aid Coordination Center, which was established in 2014 to support Russian operations in Ukraine, raised around $21,000 in cryptocurrency to purchase drones. However, according to Ari Redbord, Head of Legal and Government at TRM Labs, these amounts will remain small and are highly unlikely ever to reach the billions.