The sentencing judge made a mistake and a convicted drug dealer now owes $2.3 million in bitcoin to the Swedish government.
After the illegally acquired crypto rose in value while he was in prison, the Swedish government must return approximately 14 million Krona ($A2.3million) of bitcoin to a convicted dealer.
Tove Kullberg, the Swedish Radio prosecutor, explained that she had successfully argued that two years back, the drug pusher’s proceeds should be taken from him. She claimed that 36 bitcoins were worth only 1.1 million Krona (about $A190,000.) The Telegraph reported.
However, by the time that the Swedish Enforcement Authority started auctioning off crypto, the price of bitcoin had risen to an all-time high. Only three had to be sold in order to equal the amount that was being booked as the dealer’s profit at the time he was arrested.
The government authority must now return 33 bitcoins to the prisoned dealer. These bitcoins are estimated to be worth approximately $2.3 million as of Monday morning, despite their illicit origins.
According to Ms Kullberg, “The lesson from this is to keep bitcoin’s value, that the crime profit should be 36 bitcoin regardless of the bitcoin’s value at the time,” she said.
She added, “It is unfortunate for many reasons.”
“It has caused consequences that I wasn’t able to anticipate at the time.”
According to the prosecutor, the case was unique in that cryptocurrency was taken in this country’s history. Therefore, there is no precedent.
Ms Kullberg stated that she believes we should invest in internal education at the [prosecution] authority because cryptocurrency will be an issue we’ll be dealing more with than we are now.
“The less mistakes we make, the more knowledge we have within an organisation.”
One of the main criticisms of bitcoin and other major cryptos is their use by criminals.
Crypto transactions are not traceable by central authorities such as banks and governments. This makes them a popular payment choice for ransomware hackers and other criminals.