While Bitcoin is most probably the cryptocurrency of the future, thanks to its wide array of benefits, it also has times when it behaves like an actual currency. With this in mind, Bitcoin recently played an important role in determining whether a crime was committed or not.
Ross Ulbricht, who is one of the few people who had the possibility to run Silk Road, was recently arrested on drug trafficking charges. As he is considered to have been the kingpin behind the online drug bazaar, Ulbricht was recently investigated by the FBI and sent to trial after it was proven that millions of dollars made in Bitcoin payments were sent over to his account until the last day before the arrest.
In order to try and free him, his attorney chose quite a surprising approach to the defense, stating that while Ulbricht did run the site, the millions of dollars in Bitcoins aren’t actually his. While there is no way to prove that the money is his thanks to the anonymous nature of the cryptocurrency, the funds were actually stored on his laptop. Investigations have shown that September 2012 to August 2013, around 3760 Bitcoin transactions have been made on the same laptop of over 700,000 coins, which would mean around $18 million in total, all from the black market, therefore contradicting the defence which stated that the money came from Bitcoin trading.
However, it is believed that the trial and conviction were both biased mainly due to the fact that a Bitcoin address is never linked to a name and there is no way to prove that the money was sent to him regardless of the fact that it arrived to his laptop. Things could’ve been simply set up, yet the jury did not agree with the defence approach.
By keeping everything that has been outlined so far in mind, is cryptocurrency beginning to play an important role in justice? Should there be a legislation governing virtual currencies? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section below.
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