According to the Bulgaria Today report, two men have been detained in connection with the theft of $1.5 million in electricity used for mining Bitcoin in the small town of Kyustendil. Representatives from the Oblast Directorate of the Ministry of Interior Affairs (ODMVR) and CEZ Electro Bulgaria spoke at a news conference, stating that the two men from Sofia, aged 31 and 38, were caught funneling power to their two illegal crypto mining farms from the last 3 to 6 months.
This is the largest theft of electricity the firm had ever discovered.
CEZ Deputy Director Philip Yordanov said this was “the largest theft” of electricity the firm had ever discovered. The power stolen illegally was enough to power the neighboring township for roughly a month. Police detained the two men for 24 hours before being released to await trial. Illegal use of power to operate crypto mining firms is not something new. Several countries have reported the same crime. Electricity used for running machines that mine crypto costs quite high and is the main resource that crypto miners have to pay for.
Authorities crackdown on illegal crypto mining firms
Crypto miners in many countries have attempted to siphon power off the network as more become aware of the profitability of tokens. One of the biggest theft occurred in China in July 2019, when 22 suspects were arrested after reportedly being involved in an illegal crypto mining farm using $3 million in stolen electricity. Police confiscated 4,000 mining rigs at nine different factories. Earlier, Russian regulators attempted to crack down on Bitcoin miners stealing power. The police arrested a 30-year-old miner accused of stealing nearly $500,000 in electricity from the state power network. As reported earlier, five crypto mining operators were caught stealing electricity supply worth at least RM250,000 a month in Malaysia.