U.S. Marshals Service to Auction off 660 Bitcoin

October 31, 2018 / by Jackson Rickun

Next Monday, the U.S. Marshals Service (USMS) will auction off 660 bitcoins seized from 31 past federal, criminal, and civil cases.

According to a USMS website announcement, some of the cases include forfeitures from money launderers, individuals with Dark Web associations, drug dealers, and more.

The bitcoins, worth over $4 million USD at the time of this writing, will be sold in a 6-hour auction 8 a.m. EST on November 5th, the website said. Bidders who wish to participate must register with the USMS and deposit $200,000 no later than this Wednesday, October 31st.

The sealed-bid auction will take place in two series – Series A (6 blocks of 100 bitcoins) and Series B (1 block of 60.xx bitcoins). The announcement said that bidders will not have access to any other bids or have the chance to change bids after submission.

The USMS further specifies that a block transaction is defined as a sale and transfer to single Bitcoin addresses. As such, all 660 bitcoins will be dispersed to a maximum of 7 Bitcoin addresses. However, the website does not specify if one bidder is able to win more than one auction.

There are also specific terms of sale for prospective bidders. All bids need to be made in USD cash. Furthermore, the USMS reserves the right to deny sale to any bidder.

“The USMS will not transfer any bitcoins until it has confirmed receipt of purchase funds from the buyer. The USMS will not transfer bitcoins to an obscene public address, a public address apparently in a country restricted by the Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), a public address apparently associated with terrorism, other criminal activities, or otherwise hostile to the United States,” the website states.

The USMS said that there is no disclosed reserve price for auction. Although bidders will have to price bids themselves, assets sold through auction typically sell significantly lower than market price.

The USMS says they hope to notify winners by 5:00 p.m. EST on November 5th and that winners must initiate wire transfers by by 2:00 p.m. EST on November 6th to successfully complete the sale.