The Chinese authorities have gripped up their crackdown on cryptocurrency with prison terms announced on Feb. 24.
According to a statement by China’s Supreme People’s Court, those who illegally try to raise funds through token sales from the public could face jail times ranging from less than 3 to over 10 years.
The amount of money raised will determine the length of prison time for the perpetrator. Article 192 of the Criminal Law provides that prison time for violators will not exceed 5 years if the raised fund is relatively large. The person will also have to pay fines ranging from 20,000 yuan (3,160 dollars) to 200,000 yuan, 31,600 dollars.
If the sum of money is enormous or other circumstances are serious, the person could be put behind bars for 5 to 10 years and pay a fine between 50,000 yuan (8,000 dollars) to 500,000 yuan (80,000 dollars).
For especially large funds or especially serious violations, the person is subject to 10 years or worst life in prison. There will also be a fine of between 8,000 dollars and 80,000 dollars and property confiscation.
The change will take effect on March 1, 2022.
While crypto-based fundraising has been prohibited in China since 2017, the latest amendment means that Chinese courts may now formally penalize those who do not comply.
Meanwhile, Bitcoin has been outlawed in China since 2013, saying that it was a potential outlet for cash laundering. The regulations have caused cryptocurrency miners and exchanges to relocate to places such as Hong Kong and Singapore in droves.
The Chinese government has also developed its own digital yuan in the booming cryptocurrency market, dubbed e-CNY.