For the past few months, it’s been said that the US government intends to sell part of the Bitcoin trove it obtained from the Silk Road black market.
The authorities have announced that some 30,000 Bitcoins will be auctioned off. These are worth over $17 million (€12.5 million), depending on the market price, which is known to fluctuate quite easily.
The Bitcoins are reportedly being held in two wallets owned by the US Marshals Service and they’ll be put to auction on June 27. The press release indicates that the auction will be open between 6AM and 6PM EST on that day. “The Bitcoins offered in this auction have been ordered forfeited to the United States,” reads the announcement.
The Silk Road Bitcoins will be divided into two phases for those eligible to enter the bid. The nearly 30,000 Bitcoins were split into nine blocks of 3,000 BTC, which are part of “Series A,” and another block with 2,656 BTC, which is part of “Series B.”
Those who wish to participate won’t have it easy. The US Marshals Service has made it mandatory for people to wire a $200,000 (€147,409) deposit sent by wire transfer from a bank with in the United States. They also have to provide a copy of a government-issued photo ID and a manually signed PDF copy of the bidder registration form. The documentation must be delivered by June 26 at 5PM EST.
Those who are found ineligible for the auction will be notified of the fact and their deposits will be returned. The money received by the US government from the winning bidders will be retained by the US Marshals Service and taken out of the final purchase price.
If individuals submit orders for multiple BTC blocks, they could receive any number of blocks up to the maximum total that they showed interest in. This means that they could get anywhere between 1 and 6 blocks of 3,000 BTC.
According to the rules, the person who offers most wins the bid. If there’s a tie, the first bid receives the loot.
The payment for the BTC trove needs to be made in cash and winners will be notified by the end of the month. By July 1, the payment needs to be made, the government said.
There’s been quite a bit of interest in the Silk Road Bitcoins, but it remains to be seen whether this was just big talk or if the intent is real.