28 Jun 2018
US Prosecutors seize $17M in Bitcoin while looking to seize another $24 million related to the charges of selling counterfeit drugs on the dark web.
28 June, AtoZ Markets – The US law enforcement has reportedly seized $17 million in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The officials are known to be seeking to seize another $24 million from two Maryland, USA individuals.
The planned seizure of $24 million is related to the charges of selling counterfeit drugs on the dark web, as per the US Department of Justice (DoJ). Aside from $17 million in Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies, the US Law Enforcement has seized $2.5 million in computer equipment and over $1.5 million in cash.
The officials are now looking to forfeit “no less than”$5.67 million, plus the value of 4,000 BTC. These assets are believed to be the proceeds of the illegal drug sales.
The six-count indictment has been unsealed on June 22. It alleges that during the period from November 2013 to June 2017, Ryan Farace, 34, has been selling “Xanax” pills on the dark web in exchange for Bitcoin. Along with Robert Swain, he is also charged with laundering the proceeds via means “designed to conceal the source and ownership of the illegal funds.”
Now, Mr. Farace faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison. He is charged on drug distribution counts, while both men are facing a maximum of 20 years of imprisonment on money laundering charges.
Back in February, a two-year study of the dark web ecosystem has concluded that Bitcoin might be losing its status as the number one currency on darknet market. This is due to the fact that users were not satisfied with the network traffic and transaction fees.
This March, Ohio state’s federal prosecutors looked into forfeiting more than 500 Bitcoin seized during the probe of a group reportedly producing fake identity documents. The US Marshals Service has been setting up auctions for seized cryptocurrencies. Earlier this January, they have sold 3,813 Bitcoins. The auction took place in three rounds. The first round presented 5 lots of 500 Bitcoins, the second – 5 lots of 100 Bitcoins, with the final round selling-off the remaining 813 Bitcoins.
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