Police in Porto Alegre have just nabbed a man suspected of laundering money for drug lords using bitcoin mining platforms. The man is said to be currently detained pending further probe into multiple charges that he might be arrayed in court for including dealing drugs, laundering money for drug cartels through bitcoin mining and forgery of number plates. Police found what they believe to be the hardware used for solitary bitcoin mining rigs worth well over R$ 250,000 which is about $63k
Sources say that police only stumbled upon the crypto mining farm while they were on a crackdown flushing out known drug traffickers the area. First officers on the scene were stunned to discover some top of the line hardware and software which was running around the clock. In this part of the world, mining is very rare and it was not clear how the hardware was acquired from china.
Among other violations, the owner of the over 25 rigs for bitcoin mining was stealing electricity to juice up the cash makers which police will be suing him for definitely.
Bitcoin is not illegal in Brazil
The mining itself is not illegal in this part of the world except for the illegal abstraction of power, possession of an unregistered firearm, cloning of number plates among other serious offenses. The sum total of all these irregularities in the man’s ‘cryptocurrency mining enterprise’ could be that he is working for a criminal gang that has been dealing drugs in the region and laundering money for them.
It is suspected that the man smuggled the rigs from china in a bid to hide from the authorities and rented a whole building on his own to run is illegitimate businesses.
No a first time offender
The man behind the illegal Brazilian bitcoin money laundering has a well-documented history of violence and gruesome crimes including murder of a military police officer, drug trafficking among others.
More than meets the eye
It was on a routine cursory search of the area and residences in pursuit of drug traffickers believed to be operating in the area that police discovered a hidden solitary bitcoin mining rigs.
Upon meeting face to face with the officers on the ground the said man claimed that he is running a legitimate cryptocurrency mining business and has only rented the whole building for privacy and security of his investment. But on taking a close look police were to find more illegal acts and violations that lead them to believe that the man was indeed working for the drug cartels in a bitcoin mining and money laundering scheme.
Man to face serious charges.
Apart from the illegal importation of his mining gear, the man was also stealing power to run the illegal Brazilian bitcoin mining expedition. There could be no telling how many more such establishments might be out there even in part of or the world like Porto where we previously didn’t think cryptocurrency mining activity was underway.