A Russian opposition leader, Alexei Navalny has reportedly raised significant funding in bitcoins for his political campaigns.
According to public blockchain data, Alexei Navalny – President Vladimir Putin’s main opponent has received around 591 BTC in donations, worth roughly $3 million.
Navalny runs the Anti-Corruption Foundation (FBK), an investigative center which became popular for exposing government officials such as the prime minister Dimitri Medvedev and attorney general Yuri Chaika, published an investigative piece.
On Monday, an anonymous Telegram channel, “FBK Staffer’s Confession”, noted that the Navalny organization’s wallet received several large donations a few days before FBK published one such investigation, insinuating it was a paid hit piece. The claim was covered in Russian media, including the pro-Putin Tsargrad TV.
The major donation in BTC Navalny had received came at a strategic period and although originally transparent and visible for everyone to see on public blockchain, its timing was called into question by a pro-Putin television network.
Additionally, an anonymous Telegram channel related to the FBK claimed that on November 21, 2018, a donation of 19.9 BTC was made. November 22 then saw a video published about an individual known as Sergei Brilev. Several other large ones had been made around the time of some recent exposés, insinuating it was paid hit piece
FBK Chief of Staff Leonid Volkov denied that the investigations were financially motivated, telling news publication Znak that “each time Encke’s Comet approaches the Earth it coincides with a big war: 1914 (First World War), 1941 (World War II) and 2014 (War on Eastern Ukraine). But its rotation period is three years, and it approached the Earth many times when there were no big wars”. This was presumably supposed to mean that the timing was a coincidence.