An auction in the UK featuring Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies seized from a criminal earned police sales of above-market prices.
The cryptocurrency market has hit a dip over the last week, but that does not mean that enthusiasm for virtual currencies is waning. An example of continued interest in crypto took place at a recent police auction in the United Kingdom. Up for bid from Wilsons Auctions was 62 lots of Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies seized from Elliott Gunton, a notorious hacker. The prices paid for Bitcoin exceeded the current market value for said cryptocurrency.
Gunton, the source of the auctioned cryptocurrencies, gained his funds through a number of illicit activities. He was found guilty of offering his hacking services, as well as providing stolen personal data, for cryptocurrency. He was also part of the TalkTalk hack in 2015 where the bank account info for 156,959 accounts was accessed, costing the company at least US$94.5 million.
However, Gunton’s misdeeds do not end there. He has also been indicted in the United States for hacking the EtherDelta cryptocurrency exchange back in 2017. In that attack, Gunton allegedly changed the DNS settings to redirect traffic to a clone site that would then steal user info.
Gunton was recently sentenced to 20 months in prison and ordered to pay $491,000.
The auction featured 62 lots of cryptocurrencies, featuring Bitcoin, Ripple, Bitcoin SV, and Ethereum. The auction house reported they received 7,500 bids, covering all corners of the globe. Wilsons Auctions reports they received bids from countries such as the United States, Canada, Brazil, Singapore, Dubai, and Australia.
While exact figures for the other cryptocurrencies have not been released, the sale of the Bitcoin lots has been. People were willing to pay above-market prices to get their hands on the seized BTC, with 1 BTC selling for $8,365 and half a BTC selling for $4.236. A quarter of a BTC sold for $2,426. At the time of the auction, Bitcoin was selling for $8,012. There must have been some fierce bidding for those quarter BTC lots as the extrapolated price for that amount equals $9,704 per BTC.
Aidan Larkin of Wilsons Auctions remarked:
Despite one of the most significant market dips in recent months during the auctions, the results from these auctions indicate that we are exceeding market value by breaking the cryptocurrency down to smaller Lots […]
The U.S. Marshals Service has held a number of high-profile auctions over the last few years featuring Bitcoin seized from criminals. Last November saw the sale of 3,813 BTC that were worth $42 million at the time of auction. Venture capitalist Tim Draper made a good investment in 2014 when he bought a majority of 50,000 BTC seized from the Silk Road marketplace. Draper paid $365 per BTC. Currently, one BTC is trading for $8,206.
Images courtesy of Pixabay, Flickr, and the Daily Mail.