The U.S. sold approximately 500 Bitcoins for approximately $19.2 million in 2018. According to reports, this is the largest net forfeiture in the history of northern Ohio.
- Federal authorities in Ohio in the United States sold Bitcoin seized in a fraud case in 2018.
- The Acting U.S. Attorney Bridget M. Brennan announced on Thursday that the seized bitcoins were sold for nearly $19.23 million. The initial value of the coins seized during the investigation was approximately US$ 2.88 million. According to reports, this is the largest net forfeiture in the history of northern Ohio. The authorities did not specify how and where the coins were sold.
- The case involved a 37-year-old Toledo area man, Mark Alex Simon, who produced false identification documents for residents of Ohio, Michigan, and Utah. These documents include driving licenses and personal ID cards. He pays in Bitcoin.
- Simon pleaded guilty to conspiracy to launder money and transfer false identification documents in June 2019 and was sentenced to two years in prison.
- Prior to this case, Simon had been investigated by the police for forging identity documents in 2008, but was never prosecuted.
- In 2015, the authorities traced a fake ID found in a bar near Wittenberg University to a website established by Simon. Court documents detail that after months of investigation, the police were able to link the fake card with Simon and others who worked with him.
- The authorities raided Simon’s home in Toledo and the homes of others involved in the case. They confiscated more than 500 bitcoins from Simon through the confiscation process.
- In confiscation cases, the proceeds are shared between the federal agencies involved in the investigation and the local police department and used to compensate any victims of the crime. Any remaining money will be returned to the U.S. Treasury Department.
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