Bearish Authorities Sold $14M of Cryptos Seized from Darknet Busts
Law enforcement in Germany sold more than $14 million (â¬12 million) worth of seized cryptos for fear that their prices would fall. The prosecutors and other authorities decided to make an emergency sale of cryptocurrencies that were seized from Darknet related busts.
According to Der Tagesspiegel, the bitcoins were treated like âperishable foodâ. The source reported that the prosecutors ordered the sale of the digital currencies on February 20.
The concerns over high volatility of the cryptos came at a time when the price of bitcoin had rebounded to almost $10,000 from falling to $5,947 which was the lowest point of 2018.
The Bavarian prosecutors came to the conclusion to sell off the coins and they said it took them nearly two months to trade the last coin on a German-based exchange platform. Some of the currencies involved included 220 ethereum, 1,399 bitcoin cash, and 1,312 bitcoin gold.
The coins had been seized from two ongoing cybercrime investigations that were converted by law keepers in the country. Although the prosecution side has not yet forwarded the culprits to the court for trial, the laws of the land allow for the sale of assets whose value may decrease as long as the investigation is ongoing. The report further explains that the government used this provision to sell the currencies to stop the immediate threat of losing value.
The state prosecutors in Bavaria said that the Bayern Central Office of Cybercrime ordered the emergency sale after being bearish about the coins. They believed that the digital assets were vulnerable to fluctuations or even possible loss and thus resulted into the deal as the only way to save the wealth.
After the auction, the office was unclear on how to handle the liquid cash obtained in the process. The attorneys had not given a definite way forward on whether they found enough evidence to push the case to trial.
It was not determined whether the money would forward to the treasury of the government or to pay off the court fees of the owners. According to the law, the authorities should come up with a detailed report of the money trial and final destination.
Criminals in the country have relied on the cryptocurrencies to fuel their business. On many occasions, the local authorities have targeted such trades and they have been able to raid them, taking away their coins.
One of the suspect whose coins were confiscated and given away in the recent trade is the illegal online platform âReading and Listeningâ. The LuL.to portal, for instance, illegally offered more than 200,000 audiobooks and e-books for a few cents. More than 30,000 people used the platform. In June last year, units from the Cybercrime Competence Center and the Zentralstelle Cybercrime Bayern closed down the site and arrested the operators.
Prosecutor Thomas Goger says that the developments of the price of bitcoin did not affect the sale. He adds that the sale was a complex procedure that had been planned for a long period.
âThe sale would have been started regardless of the daily price,â said Goger. It did not matter then that when the bitcoins were sold, it was a little more than $7,200.
Goger appreciated that accessing digital cash is not as easy as it is for fiat in the bank. He says that the coins had been stored on hard disks, hardware bitcoin wallets and were protected with passwords. However, he was glad that âthe accused cooperatedâ.