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The US Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit finalized the forfeiture of 69,370 BTC, Bitcoin gold, Bitcoin SV, and Bitcoin Cash, tied to the notorious Silk Road marketplace.
The mandate from the US Court of Appeals comes three years after authorities seized Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies from the alleged hacker, Individual X.
US Court Finalizes Mandate
The judgment formalizing the forfeiture of the cryptocurrency was made in August but will only take effect now, according to a filing in the United States District Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit. The filing, made on Wednesday, names Silk Road founder Ross Ulbricht as a defendant, two claimants, and the United States government as a plaintiff.
The mandate comes after the seizure of the listed cryptocurrencies from an alleged hacker, Individual X, who signed a consent and agreement of forfeiture with the US Attorney’s Office of the Northern District of California on the 3rd of November, 2020.
Value Of Seized Crypto
The US department had seized the cryptocurrencies in question and began seeking the official forfeiture of the cryptocurrency in 2020. At the time, the value of the assets was over $1 billion. A few days before the authorities’ seizure, 69,369 bitcoins were moved from a wallet address. This marked the first activity associated with the holdings since 2015. At the time, the wallet in question was the fourth largest Bitcoin wallet, according to data from BitInfoCharts. At the time of the seizure, the government stated that it was the largest seizure of crypto in the history of the Department of Justice. At the time of the seizure, Bitcoin was trading around the $13,700 mark, while the cryptocurrency is now trading at around the $43,700 mark.
“The complaint alleges that these funds were traced to a Bitcoin address. Further investigation of that Bitcoin address by the United States Attorney’s Office and IRS CI agents revealed that the funds were connected to Individual X. It was further determined that Individual X had hacked the funds from Silk Road. Pursuant to that investigation of the hack, law enforcement seized several thousand Bitcoins on the 3rd of November, 2020. On the 4th of November, 2020, the seized Bitcoin had a value of over $1 billion.”
Court documents also revealed that the United States government knew the identity of Individual X. Individual X signed a Consent and Agreement to Forfeiture with the US Attorney’s Office.
“On the 3rd of November, 2020, Individual X signed a Consent and Agreement to Forfeiture with the US Attorney’s Office, Northern District of California. In that agreement, Individual X consented to the forfeiture of the Defendant Property to the United States government. 24. On the 3rd of November, 2020, the United States took custody of the Defendant Property from 1HQ3.”
The Justice Department also revealed that investigators used software tools to identify 54 undetected Bitcoin transactions executed by Silk Route. It also added that Chainalysis assisted in the investigation.
“Investigators used software tools to identify “54 previously undetected bitcoin transactions executed by Silk Road, all of which appear to represent bitcoin, which was the proceeds of unlawful activity, that was stolen from Silk Road in or about 2012 and 2013.”
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