$22M+ Bitcoin, Crypto Confiscation: US Justice Dept Publish Year-Long Secret Darknet Operation

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Tuesday saw the United States Department of Justice (DoJ) announce some damning results that arose from their “year-long, coordinated national operation” targeting illicit products vendors negotiating on the Darknet. Especially, one of the numerous noted outcomes was the seizure of almost “2,000 Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies”— valued at over $20 million — and Bitcoin mining equipment, as well.Let’s Be Clear As not

to cause confusion, listed below are

the direct, relevant Bitcoin(BTC )and crypto-related quotes from the DoJ’s press release. The operation, which”culminated in 4 weeks of more than 100 enforcement

actions around the nation, led to the following: “Seizure of almost 2,000 Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies, with an approximate value of more than$20 million

; [and]”Seizure of Bitcoin mining gadgets, computer system devices, and vacuum sealers.”The DoJ’s report information 7 circumstances whereby their coordinated operation

led to federal charges. Of these, Bitcoin and/or cryptocurrency function in six of these ~

150-word case summaries.The phrases”Bitcoin,””crypto,””Ethere [u] m,”and”Komodo” were used in 12, 5, 1, and 1 instance(s), respectively.Also of significance to the crypto industry, were the following comments made by an assistant director of the United States Secret Service(USSS), who, in addition to the U.S. Migration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), the U.S. Postal Examination Service(USPIS)and the U.S. Drug EnforcementAdministration(DEA ), worked with the DoJ on the year-long development investigation: The Secret Service is happy to deal with our police partners to help fight one of the largest dangers to the U.S. financial facilities , cash laundering with virtual currency.”– Kenneth Jenkins Maryland Pair Make(Then Lose)$ 22M+in Bitcoin, Crypto Nearly all of the Bitcoins and other cryptocurrencies that were taken as part of the across the country investigation seem borne out of federal charges laid upon 2 Maryland homeowners, Ryan Farace and Robert Swain. The indictment, made by the U.S. Lawyer’s Office for the District of Maryland, alleges”

that Farace distributed [alprazolam tablets]

. through sales on the dark web in exchange for Bitcoin, which Farace and Swain laundered the drug proceeds through monetary transactions created to hide the source and ownership of the prohibited funds.” The two men’s case summary continues,

exposing that”to date, law enforcement has taken various crypto currency, to consist of bitcoin, valued at over$22 million at the time of the seizures, and over$1.5 million in cash.”Tellingly, the DoJ information that”as part of the indictment, the government looks for the forfeit of no less than $5.665 million, plus the worth of 4,000 Bitcoin thought to be the profits of the controlled substance sales, 2 houses, and a lorry utilized to help with the drug distribution.” Moving Doors Moment?Somewhat poetically, news of today’s sizable crypto-confiscations come simply one day after leading VC firmAndreessen Horowitz hired Katie Haun to co-lead their new crypto fund,’ a16z crypto’. Obviously, Haun invested over a decade with the Department of Justice as a federal district attorney. In this position, she led examinations into the Mt. Gox hack and the task force accountable for

investigating one of the Darknet’s many infamous drug marketplaces, Silk Roadway. With the crypto community now blessed with Haun’s vital know-how on matters connecting to technological-regulatory overlap, is this an indication that the sector is maturing?Indeed, numerous would concur

that the general public still– rightly or wrongly– associate the Bitcoin motion with underground culture, where its usage relates specifically to criminal activities. Today’s arise from the DoJ definitely attest to this usage case, offered the operation saw over$20 million worth of Bitcoins seized; much morethan their seizure of$3.6 million-plus worth of USD and gold bars. Image From Shutterstock The post$22M+ Bitcoin, Crypto Confiscation: United States Justice Dept Publish Year-Long Secret Darknet Operation appeared initially on Cryptocoin Spy.