Skip to main content

Feds to auction off $18 million worth of Bitcoins from Silk Road seizures

how to trade bitcoin

The United States Marshal Service will auction off $18 million worth of Bitcoins that were seized from the closure of the Silk Road marketplace. The site, which was said to have facilitated the sale of drugs and other illegal goods in the so-called “dark net,” was shut down by the FBI last October.  

Transactions on the online marketplace were based on the digital currency. During the seizure, the feds were said to have taken a total of 174,000 Bitcoins. Of the entire haul, which is now worth around $100 million, 29,656.5 Bitcoins are being sold by the government. 

In a press release, the USMS invited people to submit a bid for purchasing the Bitcoins. The transaction is strictly cash only, so don’t expect to be able to trade in your Dogecoins or Darkcoins

Joining the bidding requires an investment, though. The seized assets will be sold off in nine blocks of 3,000 Bitcoins and one block of 2,656.5 Bitcoins and can only be bought after sending the USMS a $200,000 deposit. Even then, participation in the auction is not guaranteed. Bidders must undergo an evaluation process. If the USMS deems you unfit for the auction, your money will be sent back and you will not be able to bid.

Most of the Bitcoins from the FBI’s Silk Road bust were taken from the computers of Ross Ulbricht, the alleged mastermind of the illegal marketplace. However, these were not included in the auction because the seizure was challenged in court last December. 

The Ulbricht haul has been labeled “DPR Seized Coins.” DPR stands for “Dead Pirate Roberts,” the pseudonym linked with the Silk Road’s operator. Ulbricht was charged for drug trafficking, money laundering, and computer hacking offenses. He has challenged the seizure of his Bitcoins under civil forfeiture rules.

Editors' Recommendations

Christian Brazil Bautista
Christian Brazil Bautista is an experienced journalist who has been writing about technology and music for the past decade…
WatchOS 10 doesn’t fix my biggest issue with the Apple Watch
watchOS 10 presented at WWDC 2023.

As expected, WWDC 2023 was a packed show. From exciting new features in iOS 17 to a 15-inch MacBook Air to Apple's first foray into VR with the Vision Pro headset, there was plenty to get excited about. But I was focused on how Apple would improve the Apple Watch with watchOS 10.

To Apple's credit, there's a lot about watchOS 10 that looks great. The new design for full-screen apps is gorgeous, accessing widgets on your watch face is an ingenious idea, and I'm in love with the two new watch faces.

Read more
iPadOS 17 has a hidden surprise for fans of the original iPad
The original iPad wallpaper in iPadOS 17.

There were a lot of exciting announcements yesterday at WWDC 2023, Apple's yearly developer conference, especially with things coming to iPadOS 17. But one small Easter egg seems to have made its way in with the software update for longtime Apple fans.

Fans of the original iPad will remember the wallpaper that Apple's first tablet had by default that was used in all of the promotional ads and marketing. Now, with iPadOS 17, it seems to be making a comeback.

Read more
This one, crucial thing will make or break the Apple Vision Pro
Apple Vision Pro headset seen from the side.

I’m hugely excited about the Apple Vision Pro, but I’m also aware of how much of a risk it is. Not because it’s a hugely expensive VR headset — but because I wear spectacles to correct my vision. I’m not alone either, obviously. The Vision Council claims more than 166 million adults in the U.S. do the same, and the number may reach 2.2 billion when the entire world is taken into account.

Apple needs to take spectacle wearers as seriously as it does the technology inside the Vision Pro and the 23-million-pixel displays we will stare at. Because if millions of people aren’t reassured right from the start that they will comfortably be able to see what’s going on, then they simply aren’t going to buy it.
Why it's a pain
Sony PlayStation VR2

Read more