One of the largest exporters of electricity in Europe has revealed details of the most significant theft they have had in history, linked to a massive illegal bitcoin mining farm in a small Bulgarian village.
Bulgarian Electricity Company Uncovers Massive Electricity Theft Linked to Illegal Bitcoin Mining
According to Vesti, CEZ Group and police in Bulgaria started conducting investigations on Dec. 12 in the village of Herakovo, municipality of Bozhurishte, due to growing reports of anomalies in the electricity supply.
What the authorities found, the report said, was that a massive bitcoin mining farm was draining almost the entire medium-voltage network of the electricity company, as the miners installed transformers in a building that powered over 1,000 ASIC machines to mine crypto.
The police rapidly traced the origin of the anomalies. They seized the entire illegal mining infrastructure, whose amount of power stolen was “equivalent to the electricity supply for about 4,250 families for a month”, making it the biggest one in its history.
The local media outlet stated that the Ministry of Interior has already arranged pre-trial proceedings to pursue criminal charges against the operators, without providing additional details.
Illegal Crypto Mining Background in Bulgaria
Bulgaria is no stranger to news related to illegal cryptocurrency mining operations. On Aug. 14, two men were detained in Kyustendil’s small town connected with another massive theft of electricity worth $1.5 million, used for mining BTC.
At that time, representatives from the Oblast Directorate of the Ministry of Interior Affairs (ODMVR) and CEZ Group stated that the two Bulgarian individuals stole the power supply for three to six months.
As part of an international law enforcement operation involving Europol, 20 individuals suspected of belonging to the QQAAZZ criminal network were arrested on Oct. 15. They are accused of laundering tens of millions of euros on behalf of the organization, and during the proceedings, bitcoin mining equipment was seized in Bulgaria.
What do you think about the wave of illegal bitcoin mining operations in Bulgaria? Let us know in the comments section below.
Image Credits: Shutterstock, Pixabay, Wiki Commons