UK Police Seize and Sell BTC from Large Scale Drug Bust
After police authorities apprehended a drug dealer possessing BTC, courts demanded the suspect to relinquish all his digital assets. Almost 19% of the earnings from the BTC sale have gone to law enforcement.
Earlier this week, Britain’s CPS released a full report behind a 295 Bitcoin seizing. The report stated Sergejs Teresko was hiding his illegally obtained assets under cryptocurrency with a reported possession of more than £1.2 million in Bitcoin which was then confiscated and exchanged into pounds, establishing the case as a unique one.
The suspect was a 31-year old resident of Latvia. Sergejs Teresko was apprehended and arrested after police began suspecting narcotics trade and money washing activities last year. Several high-end goods were located at his house such as elite-manufacturer watches, jewelry, a marijuana “farm” and huge cash stashes were confiscated.
Teresko pleaded guilty to several charges placed against him on the 6th of October. Among the charges were controlled drug possession and dealing, criminal property, false documents for fraudulent reasons and six charges alone for possessing the fake identification with the illicit intent of usage.
The Kingston Crown Court passed its ruling, sentencing Teresko to nine years in prison as the CPS stated. According to the agency, Sergejs Teresko made over two million British pounds through illegal activities and ordered to repay a sum of almost £1.5M or risk facing an additional ten years to his nine-year sentence.
Official reports said that a Keepkey storage unit, essentially a physical wallet was found at the criminal’s estate. After accessing the wallet via a granted warrant, Detective Inspector Rob Bryant stated that the police did not expect to find any assets within the wallet. However, the police found another two separate wallets on the hardware device. One was empty and another was used to store 295 Bitcoins.
Later, The Independent, a UK news publication explained that Surrey Police are the first within Britain to confiscate a cryptocurrency, the BTC, exchange the coins and be permitted to keep the proceeds for police task force through a court order.
The police explained the reason behind taking the seized Bitcoins to court and requesting permission to keep the converted proceeds due to the incredibly unpredictable nature of Bitcoin and a possibility of the coins being stolen once again.
The CPS stated that the coins were indeed exchanged for pounds and sold off by the Surrey Police on a legal cryptocurrency exchange. In total, 18.8% was granted to the police and deposited in an account created by the authorities.