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Silk Road scam: Convict Ross Ulbricht to pay $183M fine using $2.7B BTC

Bitcoin recovered from a wallet related to multi-billion ‘Silk Road scam’ in 2013 will be used to pay off creator Ross Ulbricht's debt to the US government.

In a recent development, around $2.7 billion in Bitcoin (BTC) was recovered from a wallet tied to a Silk Road scam in 2013 from a hacker- ‘Individual X’  and would be used to pay off creator Ross Ulbricht’s debt to the US government. Ulbricht owes more than $183 million in penalties from unlawful transactions made on the dark web portal. Prosecutors agreed to forgive the debt if one condition was met:

“The Justice Department appears to have made a deal with Ulbricht to avoid any claim he might have made to the money: In exchange for Ulbricht’s agreement to waive any ownership he might have of the bitcoins, a portion of them will be used to pay off his restitution in its entirety.”

The wallet of a person solely identified as “Individual X” was confiscated by the US Justice Department. Ulbricht would have had a claim to the 69,370 BTC now held in a US government wallet if the crypto stolen by Individual X had formerly belonged to him.

The wallet included 69,370 BTC as well as currency from forked projects in equivalent quantities. The stockpile is worth $2.7 billion at today’s values, and it was transferred to a wallet controlled by the US Justice Department in November 2020.

The funds were most likely shifted by the Feds to guarantee that no one with access to the private keys could move the BTC and to protect themselves from the hacker community. Although it is unlikely that a random hacker could gain access to the wallet, there have been countless attempts and internet advertisements for the private keys throughout the years. By checking the blockchain data, anyone may see the wallet to keep an eye on. If money leaves this wallet, it’ll almost certainly be used to sell something. Instead of hoarding cryptocurrency, the United States sells or auctions it.

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Vaishali Goel
Vaishali Goel
Technology enthusiast, explorer and academic scholar. Currently exploring the crypto world. Join me in my journey to see how crypto, NFT and Metaverse will change the world.


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