An Israeli court has ruled that the government can seize all funds in over 150 cryptocurrency wallets that have been blacklisted for allegedly funding terrorist groups.
According to local media reports, the Tel Aviv Magistrate Court issued the ruling on December 15, 2021, and it has already allowed authorities to seize an additional $33,500 from wallets linked to Hamas, a militant group classified as a terrorist organization by several countries and international organizations.
Prior to the court ruling, Israeli authorities were only legally permitted to seize digital assets with direct ties to terrorist activity, but not additional funds in the same wallets.
In December 2021, authorities seized $750,000 from the wallets. Hamas has been asking its supporters to send funds using bitcoin since January 2019 as a way to counter sanctions and financial isolation.
In February 2022, Israeli authorities also seized 30 crypto wallets from 12 exchange accounts linked to Hamas, although the value of the assets seized was not disclosed.
Although some cryptocurrency has been used for fundraising by terrorist groups, blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis found that only a small percentage of crypto funds are used for criminal activity.