The United States government transferred $922 million worth of Bitcoin from two cryptocurrency wallets that held funds seized from Bitfinex in 2016.

The U.S. government’s transfers occurred the same day Bitcoin (BTC $63,008) breached $60,000 for the first time in over two years on Feb. 28. Bitcoin rose 5.52% in the 24 hours leading up to 9:45 pm UTC to trade at $62,507. The world’s first cryptocurrency is up over 20% in the past week.

The first test transfer, worth only 1 Bitcoin ($60,200 during the transfer), occurred at 3:39 pm on Feb. 28. Shortly after, the U.S. government-labeled wallet sent a second transaction worth 2,817 Bitcoin ($172.74 million), a third transaction worth 0.01 Bitcoin ($613.35) and a fourth transaction worth 12,267 Bitcoin ($748.46 million), according to Arkham Intelligence data.

Chart

US government Bitcoin wallet transfers. Source: Arkham Intelligence

The government seized the funds in 2016 after Bitfinex was hacked for approximately 119,754 BTC, worth over $7.4 billion at its current price.

The transfers occurred a day after Ilya Lichtenstein, a hacker who stole and laundered over $4.5 billion worth of Bitcoin from the Bitfinex exchange, appeared in a Washington court detailing how he pulled off one the world’s largest Bitcoin heists.

Lichtenstein reportedly told a jury on Feb. 27 that he had access to Bitfinex’s systems for several months while also hacking individual accounts at other exchanges like Coinbase and Kraken, according to a Bloomberg report.

Lichtenstein and his rapper wife, Heather Morgan (also known as Razzlekhan), were arrested in February 2022. At the time, the U.S. government alleged they conspired to launder $4.5 billion in hacked Bitcoin, of which the government seized $3.6 billion in the largest financial seizure in history. The government seized an additional $475 million worth of Bitcoin on Aug. 3, 2022.

Lichtenstein and his wife pleaded guilty to money laundering conspiracy in connection with the Bitfinex hack in August 2023. Amazon has reportedly started making a movie on the Bitfinex money launderers. The script will reportedly be inspired by a 2022 article on the couple in The New York Times, branding them as “Bitcoin’s Bonnie and Clyde.”


Information on these pages contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. Markets and instruments profiled on this page are for informational purposes only and should not in any way come across as a recommendation to buy or sell in these assets. You should do your own thorough research before making any investment decisions. FXStreet does not in any way guarantee that this information is free from mistakes, errors, or material misstatements. It also does not guarantee that this information is of a timely nature. Investing in Open Markets involves a great deal of risk, including the loss of all or a portion of your investment, as well as emotional distress. All risks, losses and costs associated with investing, including total loss of principal, are your responsibility. The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy or position of FXStreet nor its advertisers.

Join Telegram

Recommended content


Recommended Content

Editors’ Picks

Ethereum continues hinting at rally following reduced long liquidations

Ethereum continues hinting at rally following reduced long liquidations

Ethereum has continued showing signs of a potential rally on Tuesday as most coins in the crypto market are also posting gains. This comes amid speculation of a potential decline following FTX ETH sales and normalizing ETH risk reversals.

More Ethereum News

HBAR price jumps 75% as BlackRock tokenizes Money Market Fund on Hedera

HBAR price jumps 75% as BlackRock tokenizes Money Market Fund on Hedera

Archax, Ownera and The HBAR Foundation have enabled the first tokenization of BlackRock’s money market fund (MMF) on Hedera. Last year Hedera Council member abrdn’s successfully tokenized its MMFs on Hedera. 

More Hedera News

Bitcoin price holds above $66K as Morgan Stanley files prospectus to add BTC ETF exposure in two of its funds

Bitcoin price holds above $66K as Morgan Stanley files prospectus to add BTC ETF exposure in two of its funds

Bitcoin (BTC) price remains range-bound, holding above the $63,000 level, while its upside is capped below $68,000, going against or delaying the assumption that the fourth halving would be a 'sell-the-news' outcome. While Kraken leaves a lot to ponder about following the halving, reports show that Morgan Stanley wants to add exposure for BTC exchange-traded funds (ETFs) in two of its funds.  

More Bitcoin News

Crypto community reacts as BRICS considers launching stablecoin for international trade settlement

Crypto community reacts as BRICS considers launching stablecoin for international trade settlement

BRICS is intensifying efforts to reduce its reliance on the US dollar after plans for its stablecoin effort surfaced online on Tuesday. Most people expect the stablecoin to be backed by gold, considering BRICS nations have been accumulating large holdings of the commodity.

More Cryptocurrencies News

Bitcoin: BTC post-halving rally could be partially priced in Premium

Bitcoin: BTC post-halving rally could be partially priced in

Bitcoin (BTC) price briefly slipped below the $60,000 level for the last three days, attracting buyers in this area as the fourth BTC halving is due in a few hours. Is the halving priced in for Bitcoin? Or will the pioneer crypto note more gains in the coming days? 

Read full analysis

BTC

ETH

XRP