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What to do with the 70,000 Silk Road Bitcoins seized by the US?

Photo of: Joseph Stone
by Joseph Stone

States are seizing an increasing number of cryptocurrencies in criminal cases. With its new program, the blockchain company Chainalysis wants to help these players monetize these seized assets.

69,370 bitcoins is the jackpot now in the hands of the American justice system. This treasure is the result of a record seizure recently carried out by the country’s authorities. These cryptocurrencies were the property of Silk Road, a dark web marketplace that has now been dismantled.

What to do now with all this Bitcoin? The DoJ regularly auctions confiscated crypto currency. However, this is not the only one. So much so that the management of these assets now represents a real market in itself.

And the specialist in blockchain analysis, Chainalysis, intends to turn it into a source of income. In this context, the company is announcing the launch of its asset realization program. This program is intended for government agencies and insolvency players.

Chainalysis wants to offer them solutions to help them “process, store, realize and monitor seized assets. “During their investigations, authorities must seize and store cryptocurrencies until they can be legally confiscated.

States and “insolvency practitioners” therefore “need a secure way to track, store and ultimately sell seized cryptocurrency assets in exchange for cash,” Chainalysis notes.

And this need is only expected to grow with the increasing adoption of cryptocurrency, whether for legal or illegal purposes. Already a partner of various states in investigations, the publisher therefore proposes to offer new services.

Chainalysis recalls that its solutions have enabled media actions in 2020 to confiscate cryptocurrency. The publisher mentions cases of terrorist financing, but also hacking in North Korea.

The United Nations estimates that the cyber-attacks carried out by North Korea have enabled it to amass a 2 billion dollar fortune in cryptocurrency. These funds, once laundered, would be intended to allow the regime to circumvent international sanctions and finance its arms procurement programs.