Tag - Mt. Gox
The founder and creator of the now-shuttered black market site Silk Road, Ross William Ulbricht, was found guilty by a jury of six men and six women, who deliberated for just 3.5 hours following a week-long trial. The case began in 2013, when Ulbricht was arrested in a library and his laptop seized. Ulbricht denied being the site's leader, the "Dread Pirate Roberts" (a reference from the movie The Princess Bride of a feared foe whose mantle is periodically taken up by successors), claiming that others ran the site. The jury did not believe him.
Last Thursday in the trial of United States v. Ross William Ulbricht (also known as the "Silk Road" trial), Ulbricht's attorney, Joshua Dratel, began a line of questioning that suggested his client had been set up by former Mt. Gox CEO, Mark Karpeles, with the latter being the "real" mastermind behind the drugs-and-contraband site, which was shut down in 2013. Today, in a letter the prosecution outlined to Judge Katherine Forrest why it believes the line of questioning is inadmissible.
Homeland Security special agent Jared Der-Yeghiayan took the stand recently in the trial of Ross Ulbricht, who stands accused of running a drug trafficking website called "The Silk Road" that operated for over two years, largely as a marketplace for illegal drugs, stolen data and other criminal activity. Under cross, the defense attempted to claim that former Mt. Gox chief Mark Karpeles was in fact the real owner, who went by the pseudonymous name "Dread Pirate Roberts."
Citing sources close to the law enforcement investigation, Japanese media are reporting that the Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange theft was largely an inside job. A report published today claims that of the 650,000 purloined Bitcoins, only about 7,000 are missing as a result of external theft, with the rest having been stolen by a source internal to the exchange. However, the newspaper stops short of naming any specific suspects in the case.
A US District Court judge in Washington state issued a restraining order yesterday, placing a temporarily restriction on the bitcoins.com domain from being auctioned off. Yesterday, Tibanne KK, the company owned by former Mt. Gox CEO Mark Karpeles, was ordered to account for and hold all assets. The order stems from a legal issue between CoinLab and Mt. Gox dating back to 2013.
Since the announcement of the Mt. Gox bankruptcy filing in February, CEO Mark Karpelès has remained silent on his feelings and events surrounding the Bitcoin exchange. That changed this week when he gave an exclusive interview to the Wall Street Journal, indicating that he was "scared, frustrated and angry" upon learning the extensive losses the exchange faced.
The holding company that has taken over the bankrupt exchange Mt. Gox is looking to offload its trademarks on 'bitcoin' and associated websites. The trademarks registered in Japan and the European Union are included according to a statement from an executive in the company. Tibanne hopes the packaged trademarks will fetch around $1 million in a sale.
Bitcoin holders in the US and Canada, holding balances with now-shuttered Mt. Gox, are settling class actions against the exchange. The plaintiffs are agreeing to a proposal by investment company Sunlot Holdings to buy the exchange, and become part owners of the recovered exchange, according to court filings.
The problems with shuttered and bankrupt Bitcoin exchange Mt. Gox may have been evident to employees as early as two years before its well-publicized meltdown. Six employees reportedly confronted CEO Mark Karpeles over money-handling in the organization, with the group alleging that customer funds were being diverted improperly to other expenses, such as a 3D printer, and a modified car imported from the UK for the CEO.
Another Bitcoin exchange has run into financial problems, following in the wake of other recent turmoil surrounding the currency after the collapse of Mt. Gox. Vircurex, based in Beijing, is faced with insolvency, causing the company to immediately halt withdrawals. Starting March 24, the company will put a freeze on all customer accounts.