An unidentified wallet recently made two transactions of 10,298 bitcoins and another 1490 bitcoins. It was rumored within the crypto community that the coins were among those seized from the Silk Road darknet marketplace by US authorities.
CryptoQuant CEO, Ki Young Ju, has debunked the rumor. Here’s what he said:
“So you think there’s still 1.4k BTC in the new US government wallet? How do you know that bc1qzd8… is not Coinbase’s hot or cold wallet? I think it’s just Coinbase sending the seized user deposit (10.298 BTC) from their hot or cold wallet.”
10,298 BTC are worth $309 million in today’s market. Silk Road was a notorious dark web marketplace that facilitated the sale of illegal drugs, stolen goods, and other illegal items. It was launched in 2011 and operated on the Tor network, which is a hidden network that allows users to remain anonymous and untraceable.
The auctions started in 2014
Buyers and sellers on Silk Road used Bitcoin to conduct transactions, which made it difficult for authorities to track the flow of money. The site was shut down by the FBI in 2013, and its founder, Ross Ulbricht, was sentenced to life in prison for drug trafficking, money laundering, and other crimes. Since then, other dark web marketplaces have emerged to take Silk Road’s place, but law enforcement agencies have continued to work to shut them down.
During the operation, the FBI seized approximately 144,000 Bitcoins from the Silk Road. At that time, this amount of Bitcoin was valued at around $28 million.
Subsequently, the U.S. government auctioned off the seized Bitcoins in several rounds. The first auction took place in June 2014, where around 30,000 Bitcoins were sold to multiple bidders.