In what was the largest financial seizure of all time, the DOJ recovered $3.6 Billion in Bitcoin. The bitcoin is from the 2016 Bitfinex hack that crashed the market.
The hackers are husband and wife team Ilya Lichtenstein and Heather Morgan who were arrested on Tuesday on allegations they conspired to launder bitcoin from the 2016 hack.
Who are these elite-level hackers?
Depending on where you looked, Ilya and Heather describe themselves as tech entrepreneurs, crypto investors, and/or rappers.
Heather Morgan was even verified by Twitter and wrote articles for Forbes. Makes you wonder about Twitter's verification process and how Forbes screens their own writers.
What's next for the seized Bitcoin?
It's insane to think the US, whose current admin has threatened to take executive action against crypto, now holds more bitcoin than any country in the world. Bitcoin will most likely return the funds to Bitfinex but it's a very interesting turn of events.
The government has to be licking its chops and will most likely go after other crypto criminals.
Additionally, this is a clear signal that government entities have become much more sophisticated in tracking down criminal activity on the blockchain. This is both good and bad.
It's good because maybe they will stop running news stories about how crypto is full of criminals and fraud. This was the biggest seizure of all time and outside of the fiat monetary system.
Bitcoin defenders can easily say that fiat is filled with more scams and fraud and they would be 100% right!
It's bad because it opens the flood gates of government entities going after people more aggressively than ever with collecting taxes. People who hold a lot of crypto may begin to consider moving to other counties that have more crypto-friendly tax rules.
The government has made it clear that they need money to fund the "great reset" or whatever other agenda they have going on. The money also needs more tax money to cover some of the stimulus they churned out during the pandemic.
Whatever happens next it's reasonable to assume government involvement in Bitcoin will most likely ramp up from here.