British cops raid illegal Bitcoin mining operation instead of a Pot farm
British Police officers who were engaged in a search warrant for a pot farm ended up finding a fully fledge Bitcoin mining operation that was illegally tampering with the city electricity.
The Police officers from West Midlands, UK received a tip about the site at the Great Bridge Industrial Estate, Sandwell. They carried out the raid on 18th May suspecting a cannabis plantation and instead they found a bank of about 100 PC units used for Bitcoin mining operation.
The officers have mentioned the mining operation has successfully utilized thousands of units of stolen electricity to run the operation.
The facility, which cops said they “understood to be a bitcoin mining operation,” had stolen thousands of dollars worth of electricity to operate the hunt for online riches, police said.
The officers have received tips about many visits from different people throughout the day to the farm. When they did a drone check-up on the site they have found higher heat signatures generated from the said building.
“It’s certainly not what we were expecting!” Sandwell police Sgt. Jennifer Griffin said in a statement. “It had all the hallmarks of a cannabis cultivation set-up and I believe it’s only the second such crypto mine we’ve encountered in the West Midlands.”
“My understanding is that mining for cryptocurrency is not itself illegal but clearly abstracting electricity from the mains supply to power it is,” Griffin said.
Bitcoin mining operation usually consumes an enormous amount of power and energy and emit heat due to the process. The price of Bitcoin is currently hovering around the US$ 36,000 mark per Bitcoin at the press time.
“We’ve seized the equipment and will be looking into permanently seizing it under the Proceeds of Crime Act,” she said. “No one was at the unit at the time of the warrant and no arrests have been made — but we’ll be making inquiries with the unit’s owner.”
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