Florida Agrees with The Rest of the United States, Bitcoin is a Commodity, Not Money | dinbits


A Miami-Dade judge dismissed criminal charges against Michell Espinoza of Miami Beach charged with illegally selling the virtual currency.

This follows what the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) says, what the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) says, what the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) says, and what the state of Texas and Kansas currently say and that s that bitcoin is not money. Bitcoin is a commodity, and the CFTC acknowledges that. 

The defendant, was charged with illegally selling and laundering $1,500 worth of Bitcoins to undercover detectives. These detectives told him they wanted to use the money to buy stolen credit-card number and at the amount of $1500, who really cares? 

It doesn't become a federal matter until at least $2,000 and saying you're going to do something illegal and doing something illegal are two very different things. Obviously nobody should try this at home and always decline sales for illicit use but in this case this was a bonehead arrest to begin with.

Secondly, where on earth does the laundering charge come from? Undercover police buying $1500 in bitcoin does not a laundered dollar make. That charge was equally ridiculous.

Since bitcoin is not backed by any government or bank, and was not “tangible wealth” and “cannot be hidden under a mattress like cash and gold bars.” the judge ruling the case, Teresa Mary Pooler, dismissed the charges. Which was the accurate decision.

“The court is not an expert in economics, however, it is very clear, even to someone with limited knowledge in the area, the Bitcoin has a long way to go before it the equivalent of money,” Judge Pooler 

We can only say "shhhhhhhhhhhh....", let her keep thinking that.

“This court is unwilling to punish a man for selling his property to another, when his actions fall under a statute that is so vaguely written that even legal professionals have difficulty finding a singular meaning,” she wrote.

Exactly, as we have stated multiple times over and over. This is a charge of $1500. This is just stupid.

Florida has been one of the most active states in clobbering bitcoin traders/sellers. One man got 10 years in prison where he clearly purchase illicit material and Espinoza's other half, Pascal Reid, wasn't so lucky and received probation after pleading guilty to the charge of operating an unlicensed money broker business (not a federal charge).

Espinoza was arrested along with another man, Pascal Reid, who pleaded guilty to acting as an unlicensed money broker and was sentenced to probation. Under his unusual plea deal, he agreed to teach law enforcement about Bitcoin.

Technically he could be brought up on federal charges but considering the amount in question came to $1,500, nobody is going to give that a second thought. That's clearly the sale of personal property and well under any federal reporting limit or concern.

This was the correct ruling, beside they keep shooting each other over there and have much bigger fish to fry than mess around with this ridiculous charge.



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ead more here: http://www.miamiherald.com/news/local/crime/article91682102.html#storylink=cpy

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