In recent mining news, Venezuelan authorities are cracking down on mining operations – with one Venezuelan telling reporters that he was forced to leave his home country after becoming the victim of extortion. In other news, a Taiwanese miner was shot by gangsters after failing to deliver on returns on the gang’s investment into his mining operation, and a state-owned wind farm in Estonia has begun mining cryptocurrency.
Also Read: This Week in Bitcoin: Digital Money Makes the World Go Round
Venezuelan Authorities Raid Mining Operations After Instituting Ban
Venezuelan authorities have sought to crack down on cryptocurrency mining, with local media reporting that government has banned the importation of mining hardware into the country. International shipping companies such as DHL, Domesa, and Learexpress have been informed of the prohibition on mining hardware imports. The raids are being carried out just a few months after the Venezuelan government requested that the country’s mining community create a national registry of miners – at the time inciting suspicion among Venezuelan cryptocurrency users.
In recent weeks, a Venezuelan man, ‘David’, revealed to media that was forced to flee his home country after becoming the victim of extortion from authorities. David alleges that late last year, Venezuelan police received a tip that he was mining, leading to his office being raided, and his equipment confiscated – with police demanding a ransom in order for his equipment to be returned. Believing that he had now become a target for further extortion, and fearing for the safety of himself and his loved ones, David, and his family chose to flee and cross the border into Colombia.
Miner Shot by Gangster Investors After Failing to Deliver Promised Returns
In recent weeks, a Taiwanese bitcoin miner was shot by two members of the criminal organization ‘Freshwater Gang’. The victim, Mr. Wu, was shot at seven times by Gao Qitang and Chen Yumin, however, has survived.
The Freshwater Gang has invested approximated $50 million TWD (nearly 1.677 million USD into Mr. Wu’s mining operation, and had been expecting quick returns. Mr. Wu was unable to meet the expected initial payment of $10 million TWD (approximately $340,000 USD), citing China’s crackdown on cryptocurrency as the reason. Mr. Wu was shot after an argument with the two men. The shooting took place in the Longhua Hall in Banqiao.
Gao Qitang and Chen Yumin surrendered within seven hours of shooting and were taken into custody at the Haishan Police Substation of New Taipei City.
Estonian State-Owned Wind Farm Launches Crypto Mine
On Friday, a wind farm owned by the Estonian government launched a began mining cryptocurrency. According to local officials, the mine will take advantage of virtually unlimited power available to the windswept Baltic Sea island on which it is situated.
The mining hardware, comprising a bank of computers hooked up to the seven turbine, six megawatt wind farm, was set-up by Estonian private limited company Eesti Elekter. Oleg Sonajalg, a board member of Eesti Elekter, stated “It is great that the decentralized money transfer blockchain technology has found its way to our wind farm. Hopefully, it will be a fruitful cooperation.”
“The more synergy between future technologies we find, the more able to compete we will be in the future,” Mr. Sonajalg added.
Do you think that the situation will continue to worsen for Venezuela’s bitcoin miners? Share your thoughts in the comments section below!
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