Norway Seizes $6M Crypto in Axie Infinity Heist with FBI’s Help

• Norwegian authorities, in collaboration with the FBI and DOJ, have seized about $6 million in crypto that was stolen from Axie Infinity.
• The attack was perpetrated by North Korean hacker group Lazarus.
• A money laundering operation using was identified and sanctioned by the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC).

Norway Seizes Crypto Stolen From Axie Infinity

Norwegian authorities, in collaboration with the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ), have allegedly seized about $6 million that was stolen in last year’s Axie Infinity heist.

Axie Infinity Attack

Økokrim, Norway’s National Authority for Investigation and Prosecution of Economic and Environmental Crime, announced Thursday that it has seized 60 million kroner (approximately $5.8 million) in crypto in connection with the attack against Axie Infinity and Sky Mavis, the company that developed the non-fungible token (NFT)-based online video game.

FBI Collaboration

„It is the biggest crypto seizure Norwegian police have ever made,“ said Norway’s Økokrim.The Norwegian authority explained that in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): Økokrim has seized close to NOK 60 million in cryptocurrency.

Sky Mavis Losses

Axie Infinity suffered an attack in March last year after the Ronin network validators were compromised. The reported loss was $620 million at the time.

„The attacker managed to get control over Sky Mavis’s four Ronin Validators and a third-party validator run by Axie DAO,“ Sky Mavis said.

According to the FBI, North Korean hacker group Lazarus was behind this heist.

The hackers began a large-scale money laundering operation immediately after.

U.S Treasury Sanctions Blender

In May last year, OFAC sanctioned crypto mixer Blender which had been used to launder proceeds from North Korea’s Axie Infintiy heist – processing over $20.5 million.