Australian Police confiscates $8.5M in bitcoin used for drug trafficking
According to the local
media report, an ongoing investigation into online drug trafficking on an
infamous dark web marketplace platform,, led the Police in the Australian state
of Victoria, to seize more than $6 million, nearly $8.5M in Bitcoin cryptocurrency.
In the country this is the largest ever cryptocurrency seizure. In early 2021, the information was provided to police by a Federal agency after which Victoria Police started an investigation. As per the report, with the help from the East Gippsland Crime Investigation Unit and Bass Coast Crime Investigation Unit, the Victoria Police released Search warrants at properties in Kinglake, Preston, Prahran, Dollar, and South Yarra. During the search, Items seized include drugs likes “cannabis, Psilocin (magic mushrooms), MDMA, prescription medication and white powder and crystals.” According to the reports, two properties were restrained by the authorities valued at A$2 million and vehicles valued at A $100,000. In the operation total assets confiscated were valued at A$13.1 million ($9.3 million).
As said by Victoria Police Crime Command, Commander Mick Frewen, “This is a remarkable result and one that highlights the modern nature of serious and organized crime. This is the 21st century version of drug trafficking and money laundering, with criminals using technology to enable immense amounts of community harm and misery.”
In the investigation, police arrested three people, including a 30-year-old Preston man and a 31-year-old Kinglake woman. Although both have been released pending further inquiries. The woman was charged with possession of cannabis and on March 3, 2022, she will appear in court. A 33-year-old man was also arrested at the Preston address and has been cautioned to repossess cannabis. The investigation remains ongoing.
What is Silk Road?
Silk Road, the first major online black market hosted on the dark web. It is used to buy and sell illegal drugs. In 2013, it was shut down as part of a huge operation by the US authorities. Its creator Ross Ulbricht who was a physics graduate from the University of Texas was arrested and is now serving a life sentence in jail.
CBW - External Analyst