Seized cryptocurrency seized during criminal proceedings have recently been sold in the German federal state of Bavaria for €12 million ($13.9 million). The sale involved 1,600 individual transactions over the span of two months, and consisted of 1312 Bitcoins (BTC), 1399 Bitcoin Cash, 1312 Bitcoin Gold, and 220 Ethereum.
German officials said that they ordered the sale due to the risk of high price fluctuations that could even include total loss.
Criminal proceedings were brought against the online platform “Lesen and Lauschen” (translated as Read and Listen) which illegally sold over 200,000 e-books and audiobooks for just pennies each, and used the funds to purchase the cryptocurrency. Over 30,000 people used the platform, which has since been banned.
It’s common practice to auction off seized assets, and the German sale is small compared to a $40 million sale of 3,812 BTC seized during criminal proceedings in the USA last January.
And that $40 million sale pales in comparison to what happened in Bulgaria last year, when police busted an organized crime group and seized 213,519 BTC. At the time the cryptocurrency was seized, it was worth $3.3 billion. Today, Bitcoin is worth $1.5 billion (BTC is currently trading at $7,101). It was enough to pay off 1/5 of Bulgaria’s debt.