Feds Rush to Cash in on Seized Bitcoin Cache Before the Bubble Bursts
Feds are eager to exchange a
The US government seized more than 513 bitcoins and 512 Bitcoin Cash from Aaron Shamo last year after arresting him for selling synthetic pharmaceuticals containing fentanyl on dark net markets. Shamo was also busted with 500,000 pills and $1 million in cash stuffed into trash bags, according to authorities. At the time of Shamo's arrest, the
But the U.S. Attorney's Office in
Melodie Rydalch, a spokesperson for the U.S. Attorney's Office of Utah, told the Associated Press that while selling off seized assets like vehicles is normal in the state, selling off seized bitcoin is new for Utah federal prosecutors. Shamo pleaded not guilty to 12 charges. His attorney did not contest the bitcoin sale.
This will likely be the largest amount of money that US authorities have obtained through seized cryptocurrency. In 2014, US Marshals auctioned off almost 30,000 bitcoins, one batch of the digital bounty obtained from accounts associated with the Silk Road, eight months after the FBI arrested the founder of the dark web market, Ross Ulbricht. Today that would be worth almost $531 million.