Bitcoin Inches Up; Former Mt. Gox CEO Could Face 10-Year Prison Sentence By

© Reuters. – Cryptocurrencies inched up in a holiday-time rally on Wednesday, but still remained below all-time highs this time last year.

rallied 1.2% to $3,437.80 on the Index, as of 8:19 AM ET (13:19 GMT).

Digital coins have fallen dramatically in recent weeks traders worry about increased regulatory scrutiny and volatility.

Cryptocurrencies overall were higher, with the total coin market capitalization at $110 billion at the time of writing, compared to $107 billion on Tuesday.

, or Ether, increased 1.9% to $89.26 and was at $24.21, up 4.5%, while rose 2.3% to $0.30462.

Meanwhile, former CEO of defunct Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox, Mark Karpeles, could get a 10-year prison sentence, Japanese officials said.

Karpeles allegedly embezzled $3 million of client money that was kept in a bank account and instead transferred the money to his own account in 2013. Karpeles has pleaded not guilty.

At its height, Mt. Gox handled nearly 70% of all bitcoin transactions globally and was the world’s biggest exchange.

In other news, the Central Bank of the UAE is working on a joint project with Saudi Arabia to issue a digital currency between the two countries, the governor of the UAE central bank said on Wednesday.

“This is probably the first time ever that witnesses the cooperation of monetary authorities from different countries on this topic and we hope that this achievement will foster similar collaboration in our region,” Mubarak Rashed Al Mansouri said, according to the Gulf News.

Right now the two countries are studying the topic and the currency would be between the two banks, not for consumers. Both banks have warned clients against investing and using digital currencies due to its speculative nature.

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