German authorities seize 50,000 bitcoin connected to pirated materials operation

Quick Take

  • German authorities seized 50,000 bitcoin worth over $2.1 billion from a German pirating operation. 

German authorities seized 50,000 bitcoin worth nearly $2.2 billion that was allegedly purchased using funds connected to copyrighted materials.

This seizure became the largest amount of bitcoin German law enforcement has ever seized, according to a police statement

Two men of German and Polish nationality, respectively, are being investigated for managing a pirated materials operation, buying bitcoin with the funds. The two individuals could face charges including unauthorized commercial exploitation of copyrighted works and money laundering.


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The suspects voluntarily transferred the bitcoin to wallets controlled by German authorities, and it is not clear what law enforcement will do with the cryptocurrency. 

German authorities assisting in the investigation included the Dresden General Prosecutor’s Office, the Saxony State Criminal Police Office and the tax investigation of the Leipzig II Tax Office as the Saxony Integrated Investigation Unit.

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About Author

MK Manoylov has been a reporter for The Block since 2020 — joining just before bitcoin surpassed $20,000 for the first time. Since then, MK has written nearly 1,000 articles for the publication, covering any and all crypto news but with a penchant toward NFT, metaverse, web3 gaming, funding, crime, hack and crypto ecosystem stories. MK holds a graduate degree from New York University's Science, Health and Environmental Reporting Program (SHERP) and has also covered health topics for WebMD and Insider. You can follow MK on X @MManoylov and on LinkedIn.


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