At least 611 Bitcoin have been put for sale in an auction held by French Government itself. The Government tells that salable Bitcoins were once belonged to their original owners but looted by hackers and thereafter seized by French Government.
Two sales of Bitcoins have been taking place through auctions in France under the auspices of the French Government itself. It was told that the intended auctioneers would be able to avail the opportunity of buying a few or all of the Bitcoins.
As per further details, it has been that the first auction would take place on 17th March 2021 in Paris. For carrying out the auction, French Government has engaged the services of Kapandji Morhange – a major auction house which too is based in Paris.
It was told by the company that it has never ever sold anything such as Bitcoin in an auction. It stated that the French Government has hired them to do what they haven’t done throughout their experience, i.e. sale 611 Bitcoins.
As regards the ownership of auctioned Bitcoins, the Government informed that they do not belong to anyone. In fact, they were once part of someone’s holding but the same were stolen by scammers. Thereafter, when culprits were arrested by French Police, the police took them in its possession as “seized goods”, told a police official.
French Government told that when the auction will take place, the price of Bitcoin will be locked at the value prevailing at the relevant time. At present moment each Bitcoin costs US$ 57,112.70. Total Bitcoins that have been put up for sale are 611. This meant that Bitcoins worth US$ 34,895,902.47 will be available for sale on 17th March.
With respect of the auction process, it was told that two separate auctions will take place on 17th March with an interval. The first one to be held at 0900 hours sharp while the other will be held at 0200 hours.
Further details of the French Government’s move suggested that they seized the legendary coins in between 2019-20. They were seized from hackers when action was initiated by asset recovery agency of France called AGRASC. Upon seizure of the stolen goods and items, AGRASC was to surrender the items to the French Government.
It was revealed by AGRASC that the seized goods were stolen from a crypto trading company called Gatehub. The company lost these coins in a hack attack that took place in the year 2019. For the recovery of the looted Bitcoins, the company then filed a court case seeking refund of the stolen Bitcoins.
However, the court case is still pending adjudication and in fact, the arrested persons have not admitted their crime. Until the Court comes to its final verdict, the seized goods will be sold and the proceeds will be deposited in a dedicated account.
If the prosecution fails to prove the case, then sale proceeds will be given to those from whose possession Bitcoins were seized. In the alternative, if the accused persons are found guilty as charged, then the company will be entitled to claim the proceeds.