Europe Proposes Confiscating Gold In Crackdown On "Terrorist Financing"

Tyler Durden's picture

Hot on the heels of China gold import restrictions, and India's demonetization and gold confiscations, The European Commission proposed tightening controls on cash and precious metals transfers from outside the EU under the guise of shutting down one route for funding of militant attacks on the continent, following the Berlin Christmas attack.

China has already begun de facto gold import restrictions, and as Jayant Bhandari detailed previously, India is experiencing a continuation of new social engineering notifications, each sabotaging wealth-creation, confiscating people’s wealth, and tyrannizing those who refuse to be a part of the herd, in the process destroying the very backbone of the economy and civilization. There are clear signs that in a very convoluted way, possession of gold for investment purposes will be made illegal. Expect capital controls to follow.

And now, as Reuters reports, it appears last Monday's attack on a Christmas market in Berlin, where 12 people were killed as a truck ploughed into a crowd, has given The European Commission just the excuse to tighten capital controls - specifically cash and precious metals - into and out of Europe.

It is part of an EU "action plan against terrorist financing" unveiled after the bombings and shootings in Paris in November 2015.


Under the new proposals, customs officials in European Union states can step up checks on cash and prepaid payment cards sent by post or in freight shipments.


Authorities will also be able to seize cash or precious metals carried by suspect individuals entering the EU.


People carrying more than 10,000 euros (8,413.56 pounds) in cash already have to declare this at customs when entering the EU. The new rules would allow authorities to seize money below that threshold "where there are suspicions of criminal activity," the EU executive commission said in a note.


EU officials said some of the recent attacks in Europe were carried out with limited funds, sometimes sent from outside the EU by criminal networks.

The Commission is also considering whether to set up an EU-focussed "terrorist finance tracking programme" along the lines of the U.S.-EU TFTP, which has long been opposed by EU lawmakers and privacy campaigners because it allows widespread checks on consumers' bank transfers.

The plan complements Commission proposals after the Paris attacks to tighten controls on virtual currencies such as bitcoin, and prepaid cards, which French authorities said were used to fund the bombings.


EU states backed these proposals on Tuesday. Under the deal, which still needs European Parliament approval, holders of prepaid cards would have to show some form of identity when they make payments of 150 euros or more.

But it gets better...

The Commission is also proposing common rules for the 28 EU countries on freezing "terrorists' financial resources" and on confiscating assets even from those thought to be connected to criminals.

So - cash, bitcoin, precious metals, and prepaid cards over $150 are all instruments of the "terrorists" and are now open to confiscation if you are a suspicious person... which, by their rhetoric, you are if you actually hold any of these assets.

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hedgeless_horseman's picture


The new rules would allow authorities to seize money below that threshold "where there are suspicions of criminal activity,

Do you have a receipt for this Rolex?



I will have to hold on to that for you.

hedgeless_horseman's picture


And zee gold ring?

No receipt?

Your wedding ring?

A copy of zee marriage license, perhaps?


I will hold on to that for you, too.

cossack55's picture

I'm going to start stamping 18Ct on brass rings

Perimetr's picture

As Victoria Nuland once said, 

Fuck the EU


hedgeless_horseman's picture


And you fuckers always seem to think I am joking when I talk about being able to stick 10 tola bars up my ass.

MagicHandPuppet's picture

Glad the EU is a test case petri dish long before they try it in the USA.  Meanwhile, to hell with the EU until enough of them rise up and vote out the globalist satanic cabal... and hopefully imprison the lot for treason, kick out the moozy invaders, and claim their rightful state sovereignty back.

BaBaBouy's picture

Whether Its 3500BC, 900AD, or 2016, IT'S Still "ALL ABOUT THE GOLD"!!!

The Saint's picture
The Saint (not verified) MagicHandPuppet Dec 27, 2016 2:57 PM

Hide those Bitcoins before they come for those, too!  Bury them out in the yard and pour a slab of cement over them.  LOL


laser's picture

Those gold teeth look suspicious to me.

aminorex's picture

You can't hide bitcoin, because all the transactions on the bitcoin blockchain are open to read.  That's why I switched to using Monero (XMR) instead of BTC.  So far it is up 3x in the past 2 months, 240x since my first purchase in April 2014.

Sam.Spade's picture

I looked into them and couldn't find any good wallets.  Has that changed now?

Sam.Spade's picture

The joke's on you.

One of the most secure ways of keeping Bitcoin is in a 'paper wallet'.  That just means generating a pair of keys in such a way that no hacker could ever find the private one and writing that key ONLY on pieces of paper, never on anything that can be hacked.  Burrying a copy of that paper is one good way of keeping it secure.

You should take a little time to learn about the subject before you shoot off your keyboard again.  You won't look like quite such a fool then.

Arnold's picture

Acolytes seldom make good priests.

Kaervek's picture

Confiscating gold is already hard enough with the boating accidents and all, but confiscating bitcoin? beyond sisyphean.

Sam.Spade's picture

As the Monero post stated, it's getting unclear how transparent big data has made the Bitcoin blockchain.  It may now be de-anonomized enough to put any owner of large quanties of the money at risk.

sessinpo's picture

EU is not a good comparison. Not sure if there is a good comparison. Most EU serfs have been neutered without a 2A.

But  confiscation is proably a mute point. Governments don't need to confiscate gold. All they have to do is make it illegal to own or use as for commerce. So why confiscate this barbaric relic?

Because they know at some point, gold might be used to back their phony currencies regardless of whether that currency is physical paper fiat or a digital ledger.

JohninMK's picture

ATM here in Europe gold coins are VAT free and if legal tender gains tax free. Silver isn't.

It would be very easy to change the way gold is transacted, raising revenue and reducing attraction. Especially the capital gains element in the event of a gold revaluation. If it was done as part of normal personal taxation it probably wouldn't hit TPTB as theirs will be in Trusts or Companies.

As you say, no need to confiscate at all, just tax it.

AGuy's picture

"As you say, no need to confiscate at all, just tax it."

They need to confiscate it so that they can use it to prop up their crappy fiat. Even with taxes if a lot of people convert FIAT into Gold it will undermine the valve of the Fiat. If they are planning for deep negative NIRP, they cannot allow the victims (erh, I mean) citizens, from sheltering their wealth. NIRP is a form of wealth confiscation.

FWIW: I think the Bureaucrats realize the Pension bomb that is ticking down to zero and need tools to confiscate wealth to prevent their gov't from collapsing. To delay the crisis they are seeking to nationalize private wealth.

Any assets that can be easily liquidated will be target. First Gold, then other PMs, gems, etc.

rmopf2010's picture

Pension bomb governments promised 13% social security tax for 30years and when you retire you will get 100% for 30 years.

How did Boomers go for this santa story ?

chubbar's picture

It's going to be a tough sell to outlaw something that supposedly doesn't act as money. It's under owned in the US, probably 1% or so. They can make an issue of it and make it illegal of course, but all that really does is make the point internationally that gold is money and that it is very valuable. It puts the US dollar in a bad spot if they outlaw gold here in the US. They may do it, but it will be costly to their goal.

Draybin Deffercon III's picture
Draybin Deffercon III (not verified) MagicHandPuppet Dec 27, 2016 3:08 PM

Bitcoins cannot be confiscated.

Jubal Early's picture

True, in that sense of "that that never existed, cannot be stolen".

Draybin Deffercon III's picture
Draybin Deffercon III (not verified) Jubal Early Dec 27, 2016 4:18 PM

Anyone who says things like "Bitcoin doesn't exist" or "Bitcoin is not real" deserves a special prize for being a major fucking MORON.

This is like saying "C Programming does not exist", "hamming code does not exist", "dollars do not exist".

You are a total fucking moron and a prime reminder of how far, far down America has slid.

rphb's picture

Thou art right, bitcoin doth exist, in the same way credit in a sims game exist. They are numbers on a scream. The problem with bitcoin is not their lack of existance, but their lack of intrinsic value. Bitcoin proponents forget this simple truth: SCARCITY IS BAD.

The entire purpose of all economic activities are to overcome scarcity. Bitcoin is a form of scarcity manipulation, a special form of scam where the scarcity of an item is artifically made higher to make people believe it is more valuable then it really is. The real value is usually negliable like in the case of the Beanie Baby mania in the 1990's, but with Bticoin they have mangaged to sell something that is worth Absolutly nothing.

aminorex's picture

Actually, moneyness depends on scarcity.  As VIX isolates the factor of volatility, BTC isolates the factor of scarcity.  If it were fungible it would be superior to metals, as regards moneyness.  However, the transparent blockchain destroys fungibility.

Sam.Spade's picture

To say Bitcoin is not fungible because each Satoshi has a different transaction history is about like saying a dollar bill is not fungable because it has a unque serial number.  In each case, the small differences may allow individual items to be tracked, but it does not stop either from being fungible in a functional sense.

Sam.Spade's picture

'Intrinsic value'?

What is the 'intrinsic value' of gold?  Far less than silver.  The latter is needed for many industrial processes that make products for our daily physical and emotional needs, but gold?  It doesn't corrode.  It looks pretty.  Ditto for chrome.  Copper looks nice, too, and only gets a little surface corrosion.  'Pretty' will get you a price of tens-of-dollars per pound, that's all.

OK, let's look at using something for money that does have 'intrinsic value'. Like wheat.  You can eat that.

We'll use warehouse deposit receipts for wheat as money.  Then:  What do you think will happen to inflation/deflation when harvest time comes around?  Or if a blight strikes the crop?  The last thing a candidate for money needs as a characteristic is 'intrinsic value' because that means there is a market demand for the thing outside of it's monetary purpose and that plays hell with stability of the money supply.

Sorry, rphb, but gold makes good money specifically BECAUSE it's stock/flow ratio is very high, meaning it is hard to produce AND it has no other practical use (meaning a low 'intrinsic' value.)

And ditto for Bitcoin.

Thieves Emporium deals with this and other critical economic concepts through the medium of fast-paced fiction to keep it interesting.  In fact, one of the directors of the Bitcoin Foundation said of it: "I recommend you read this book."  The Daily Anarchist agreed and called it "Barely fiction".

Readers at Amazon must agree, as they have rated it 4.6 in over 100 reviews.  Ditto for readers at Barnes & Noble and Smashwords, though with fewer reviews.

If you don't understand what money really is and why it's essential for civilization, you will be an easy mark for the next Bankster scam that comes along.  Your children's freedom depends on your learning the details, so get a copy of TE and read it now, before it's too late.

Pinche Caballero's picture

It wouldn't be warehouse deposit receipts for just a single commodity (I.e, wheat), but rather currency based on a "basket" of commodities and subsequent warehouse deposit receipts.

Read more about the concept at Schumacher Center for New Economics, and determine for yourselves if local currencies have any merit. Apparently, the concept in practice used to be a part of routine daily life, but has long since been forgotten along with the value of hard money.

Sam.Spade's picture

Using a basket of commodities doesn't solve anything, it just makes the changes in the money supply less predictable and more chaotic.

Debt money has the same problem.  You can never predict when borrowers will pay off the debt, thus reducing the money supply.  That instability is made worse because the willingness to pay down debts is tied to the velocity of money in a positive feedback mechanism, something that doesn't exist in any form of equity money, including the commodity basket you are suggesting.

Taming this instability was the justification for having a central bank, the only legitimate one, in my opinion.

Going away from debt money, such as FRN, and back to some form of equity money, partially eliminates this problem.  But, unless something who's supply is constant is chosen, such as gold, the problem will still exist and we will still need some central regulating agency to control it.  And, of course, the devil will be in the detail of who will control that agency.

sacredfire's picture

Bitcoin is a figment of someone's imagination. A so called currency that only about .010% of the people understand and less than that own is useless.


Dragbin Defecation 3 times - go back to your CIA / FED / IBS handlers, and tell them you done failed - none of the fucking lemmings wanna jump off the digital currency cliff with ya. 

Condition 1SQ's picture

You're right, but they're not much good if exchanges are banned.  At that point, it basically becomes a black-market currency.  This reduces much of its usefulness.

johngaltfla's picture

EU Logic 101:

Islamofacists commit terrorist act so ask Christians to quit acting like Christians.

Islamofacists commit terrorist act so steal gold from law abiding citizens.

Dog shits on the floor so they shoot the cat.

Kaervek's picture

They could ban anything and everything, the fear of gold being banned won't stop me from stacking. Same as with gold, you don't need approved exchanges to trade bitcoin, it's peer to peer - another reason why it's superior to wire transfers and digital credit card payments.

All this doesn't change the fundamental properties of bitcoin and why it's the best form of digital money. Outperforming most assets for how many years now? I have no qualms with you staying in your cave and being afraid of technological progress but I for one will retire early.

aminorex's picture

They are subject to the $5 wrench attack.  Only when the blockchain is opaque can you be safe from extortionists, terrorists.

USisCorrupt's picture

Bitcoins CANNOT be Confisicated, SO VERY TRUE.

Don't tell these losers who Down Vote you for they THINK they have missed the boat.

Heck I made OVER 200% on my Bitcoins alone this year.

50% I have OUT of the System. And 50% in my Coinbase account.

Soon even the Sheeple MAY EVEN catch on, and just maybe the Clowns here on Zerohedge.

But don't count on it.

You can't FIX Stupid.

philipat's picture

And this will continue so long as the sheeple accept it. Beats me why there are no mass protests in Europe by people who would like to freely use THEIR OWN MONEY, hard earned in the vast majority of cases. And the US is in many ways worse. I have a client who is trying to transfer USD 50K from UK to Indonesia as a deposit on a property transaction which has so far taken over 2 weeks. The transaction is a perfectly legitimate one involving an entirely legal long Leasehold on a Bali property. The Bank, HSBC, says that their NY Bank is still "processing" the transfer. It has gotten to the point where we are all criminals unless we can prove otherwise: a so-called reversed burden of proof for no good reason. This is madness.

I now understand why many Nations are trying to eliminate USD for all transactions because at present all USD transactions must clear through NY, giving the US control over global flows.

philipat's picture

As of now, Bitcoin can't be easily manipulated by Governments, which explains why Bitcoin is performing so well in comparison to Gold, which CAN and IS being manipulated. And Governments  and Central banks HATE this. Expect Bitcoin to be made illegal or brought under direct supervision very soon. Not an easy thing to do but if BTC gets frozen out of the financial mainstream it will eventually die until the Banksters start to use the Blockchain themselves to enhance efficiency but without any privacy for users. Sad but inevitable.

Sam.Spade's picture

Not sure I agree.  Right now, Bitcoin is stub money, meaning it is used in only a few niche applications.  If it is driven underground by the banksters refusing to exchange it for fiat, it will just start to complete the entire economic cycle.  Rather than being exchanged for fiat, it will start to be used for purchases directly.

In fact, I think the reason it hasn't been more directly attached by the banksters is because of their fear of exactly this event.  They probably think they are better off with the devil they know than the one they don't.

Sam.Spade's picture

Didn't the government confiscate Ross Ulbricht's stash?

If the government knows you have them and they can get their hands on you, then Bitcoin CAN be confiscated by simply applying a rubber hose in the correct manner.

Walt's picture

Perhaps, but they can be erased.

AGuy's picture

"Bitcoins cannot be confiscated"

"An FBI official tells me that the bureau has located and seized a collection of 144,000 bitcoins, the largest seizure of that cryptocurrency ever, worth close to $28.5 million at current exchange rates."

Also about $100M in Bitcoins are stolen every year. A few thousand of BC are lost every year, do to data loss, theft, or other issues.

Sooner or later Gov't will simply ban them, and disrupt transactions by filtering or blocking the BC protocol.

Kaervek's picture

The beauty of open source software. There already are so many clones out there, do you propose they ban them all? How about blocking the bittorrent protocol, how did that work out so far?

You can store your bitcoins in a way they won't be able to confiscate them without torturing you. If that's not enough for you I'm sorry but that's as good as it gets.

Yes maybe they will waste lots of taxpayer money on trying to curb crypto currencies but in the end all resistance is futile. This is the future of money whether you/they like it or not.

AGuy's picture

"The beauty of open source software. There already are so many clones out there, do you propose they ban them all? How about blocking the bittorrent protocol, how did that work out so far?"

Gov'ts have a lot of resources. While its possible that new tools will be developed to bypass filers, it will become increasing difficult, especially for those that don't have the technical skills or time to keep on top of the filtering. Perhaps a skilled IT person will have little issues, but it won't be so easy for the Average Joe. BC transations will likely remain limited once filters are in acted. When BC is banned that it will be impossible for people to buy everday items (food, fuel, etc).

As far as Tor, its effectively blocked in China, There are work arounds for Techies, but the majority of people have been blocked.

"You can store your bitcoins in a way they won't be able to confiscate them without torturing you. If that's not enough for you I'm sorry but that's as good as it gets."

That all depends on how you have them stored. On a thumb drive, on a PC? in a Cloud system? If you lose access to any of the method you store your BC on, than they are effectively "confiscated". Same applies if the block BC transactions. If you cannot use your BC for transactions, then they essentially been confiscated.

"Yes maybe they will waste lots of taxpayer money on trying to curb crypto currencies but in the end all resistance is futile."

They don't need to stop it completely, just make it unreasonable difficult for the average Joe from using it.

Consider that in 1933 when FDR made gold ownership illegal, it effectively made it impossible to use it as money. Yes people horded it, but it was not as if they could use gold coins for purchases,except on the blackmarket. Of course using an illegal commodity for transactions has its risks: Theft, fraud, murder, and whistle blowers, turning you in for a reward.

Since BC transactions are conducted over the Internet, and all IP traffic is monitored. It provides a means for gov't to track you down. If you use Tor, most gov'ts already have you on a list. Sooner or later Tor users will find themselves in a pickle (on no fly lists, tax audits, passport restrictions, banned from the internet, etc).

We are in the early stages of capital controls. Gov'ts around the the world are going to make it increasing difficult to circumnavigate restrictions. Watch and see.

tazs's picture

So the "Islamist Terror" crap is really a fabrication to secure bankers' control over the sheeple.

hedgeless_horseman's picture

So the "Islamist Terror" crap is really a fabrication to secure bankers' control over the sheeple.



Definitely not.



Only a little.

But it's for their own good!

SWRichmond's picture

Obviously, the reason for terror attacks is because there is not enough government control.