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HomeBTCU.S. Appeals Court Confirms Confiscation of 69,370 Bitcoin from Silk Road

U.S. Appeals Court Confirms Confiscation of 69,370 Bitcoin from Silk Road

In a significant legal development, a U.S. appeals court has concluded the official confiscation process for 69,370 Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies linked to the defunct dark web marketplace Silk Road. According to a court filing on December 20, the U.S. District Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit affirmed the transfer of these digital assets to federal control, upholding the government’s claim to the illicitly obtained funds associated with Silk Road.

The confiscated assets not only include Bitcoin but also Bitcoin Gold (BTG), Bitcoin SV (BSV), and Bitcoin Cash (BCH). The legal proceedings began in 2020 when the U.S. Justice Department seized the cryptocurrency, valued at over $1 billion at the time, and sought official forfeiture.

The initial complaint revealed that an individual known as “Individual X” had surrendered the cryptocurrency after hacking into Silk Road and gaining control of its funds. Previous coverage identified James Zhong as the Silk Road hacker, and in April, the 32-year-old was sentenced to a year in federal prison.

In July, a cryptocurrency wallet linked to the U.S. Department of Justice conducted transactions involving approximately 9,825.25 Bitcoin, valued at around $299 million, associated with Silk Road. Crypto analysts closely monitor such transactions, speculating on the potential impact a large government sale could have on Bitcoin’s price.

Ross Ulbricht, the founder of Silk Road, was sentenced to life in prison in 2015. In 2022, Ulbricht agreed to utilize $3 billion worth of stolen Bitcoin to settle his debt to the U.S. government, waiving his claim to the 69,470 Bitcoin linked to Silk Road.

The conclusion of this legal process underscores the government’s successful efforts to reclaim and control assets associated with Silk Road’s illegal activities, contributing to ongoing discussions about the regulatory landscape of cryptocurrencies and their use in illicit transactions.

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