$25 Million: US Marshals to Auction 2,170 BTC Later This Month
The US Marshals Service (USMS) has announced that it will auction off nearly $25 million worth of Bitcoin in less than two weeks.
On Monday, the agency issued a statement revealing that it will hold a sealed bid auction to dispose of 2,170 BTC — worth $23.6 million at the present Bitcoin exchange rate — seized in connection with a variety of criminal, civil, and administrative cases.
Notably, the auction will include funds seized from Shaun Bridges, a former Secret Service agent who participated in the investigation into dark web marketplace Silk Road and was later arrested for a variety of corrupt acts, including stealing 20,000 BTC from Silk Road operator Ross Ulbricht.
The sale, which is scheduled to run on March 19 from 8 am ET to 2 pm ET, will divide the funds into three series. Series A will contain two blocks of 500 BTC, Series B will contain 11 blocks of 100 BTC, and Series C will contain 1 block of approximately 70 BTC.
To participate in the auction, prospective buyers must submit a signed bidder registration form and wire a $200,000 deposit to the USMS by next week.
Interestingly, the statement does not reveal whether coins airdropped following Bitcoin forks — the most valuable of which are Bitcoin Cash and Bitcoin Gold — have been claimed from the seized wallets or if buyers will have the opportunity to claim the airdropped funds. At present, the combined value of the airdropped BCH and BTG associated with these coins is $2.8 million.
The USMS has held several Bitcoin auctions over the years, the most famous of which involved funds seized from Ulbricht in connection with the Silk Road investigation. Earlier this year, the agency auctioned off 3,813 BTC, worth approximately $50 million at the time of the auction.
Just last week, CCN reported that the Department of Justice had asked a judge to allow them to confiscate more than 500 BTC from individuals charged with forging and distributing government identification documents. If the court grants the agency’s request, it is likely that these funds will be included in a future auction.
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