The shocking revelation came out straight from an anonymous swedish criminal in the interview that Spotify has become a tool for many gangsters and criminals to launder illegal money by using cryptocurrency.
The news highlights the dark side of crypto transactions. The criminal from the anonymous gang stated in the newspaper published by Svenska Dagbladet (SvD), “I can say with 100 percent certainty that it will happen. I myself have been involved.”
An unidentified police officer working at Noa (the national operations department of the police) informed Svenska Dagbladet that they attempted to alert Spotify about the streaming service being utilized by criminals. However, the officer noted that no one from Spotify returned their call.
The police officer told a new magazine that “Spotify has become an ATM for them (the gangs). There is a direct link to the gangs and therefore also to the deadly violence.”
According to the modus operandi, criminals purchase cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin through black money. Then, they use this money to buy fake listens from Telegram bots to make particular artists popular on Spotify.
In return, these popular artists receive a big chunk of profit from Spotify. They share this profit with criminals. Rappers linked to crime have launched their own music companies, channelling all the earnings. SvD reports that one million listens generate around 40,000 to 60,000 SEK before taxes.
The criminal told SvD, “You don’t do this if you want to wash a hundred salmon, because then you lose too much along the way. But if you want to wash some rabbits (millions), that’s obviously fine”.
After the news surfaced in the community, Spotify’s spokesperson refuted the newsmagazine’s claim by stating that the SvD review is based on incorrect information.
He said, “We have no knowledge that the police have contacted Spotify regarding the claims Svenska Dagbladet writes about, nor have our internal teams discovered or received data or concrete evidence indicating that our platform is used to any great extent in the way described in the article.”