Romania’s National Agency for the Management of Seized Assets (ANABI) announced today that it would begin auctioning off bitcoin and ether, confiscated as part of an undisclosed fraud case. The starting price for 0.97 ETH is 1670 Romanian Lei ($ 401) and for 0.6 BTC – 30,535 lei ($ 7347). According to the local news report, ANABI required the winner to provide addresses associated with the cryptocurrency exchanges that use KYC procedures and meet the requirements of the country’s financial laws and measures that combated money laundering.
This is the first time Romania is auctioning off seized cryptocurrency.
While this would be a first for Romania to auction a seized cryptocurrency, authorities around the world have auctioned seized bitcoins connected to criminal activities. Back in 2017, Ernst and Young announced the auction of 24,518 BTC, which were “confiscated as proceeds of crime” by the Australian police. In the following year, Bulgaria’s law enforcement agencies seized nearly 213,000 BTC, which were also auctioned. Even the U.S government typically sells off confiscated cryptocurrencies in auctions conducted by the U.S. Marshals Service.
Crypto scams continue to rise amid the ongoing pandemic.
Scams related to cryptocurrency have increased around the world amid the ongoing global pandemic. Earlier this year, the U.S. Federal Bureau of Investigation issued a warning saying scammers might be looking to unleash a surge in crypto-related scams. Several countries also reported a surge in crypto scams that included a spike in ransomware attacks, Ponzi schemes, and other different types of scams involving cryptocurrencies. Various kinds of crypto scams have become frequent, including fake giveaways, sextortion, fake exchanges, fake ICO’s, bitcoin recovery, video scams, and Ponzi schemes.