The United States Department of Commerce has imposed a 10-year export privilege ban on Ethereum developer Virgil Griffith, who is currently serving a five-year prison sentence. The ban, in effect until April 12, 2032, restricts his ability to engage in international trade and business.
Griffith was convicted on April 12th, 2022, in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York for violating the International Emergency Economic Powers Act (IEEPA). He was found guilty of providing unauthorized services to North Korea and circumventing U.S. sanctions imposed on the country.
According to U.S. Attorney Geoffrey Berman, Griffith knowingly shared technical information with North Korea that could aid in money laundering and evading sanctions. As a result, Griffith was sentenced to 63 months in prison, followed by three years of supervised release, and was ordered to pay a $100 assessment and a criminal fine of $100,000.
The Export Control Reform Act allows for the denial of export privileges for individuals convicted of specific offenses, including violations of the IEEPA. The denial can lead to the revocation of previously granted licenses or authorizations by the Bureau of Industry and Security, an agency of the Commerce Department.
Due to the export privilege ban, Virgil Griffith will be prohibited from engaging in any transactions involving commodities, software, or technology under the jurisdiction of U.S. export regulations. This denial of export privileges applies to him as a U.S. citizen.
He was initially denied bail but was finally granted a bond order for $1 million at the end of December 2019.