The United States government holds more Bitcoins (BTC) than Tesla and MicroStrategy, the world’s largest Bitcoin holders. As of March 27, Dune data shows that the US government has more than 205,000 BTC. This amount represents more than 1% of the current circulating supply. Additionally, the holding is estimated at $5,734,743,113 currently.
Trackers disclosed that Tesla holds 10,725 BTC. While MicroStrategy owns 132,500 BTC. Together, these amounts are still less than the bitcoins controlled by U.S. agencies.
According to the report, U.S. authorities have seized a notable amount of Bitcoin over the past year. Before this, the government held at least 215,000 Bitcoins. Meanwhile, in early March 2023, they transferred 9,860 BTC to Coinbase. On the contrary, the sheer amount of digital assets still retains the government as one of the biggest bitcoin holders.
Although BTC is pseudonymous, criminals can use it for terrorist financing and money laundering. In addition, authorities increasing bitcoin holdings demonstrate the government’s success in cracking down on malicious agents and assisting victims.
US Authorities Seize Billions Worth Of Bitcoins
On November 3, 2020, the U.S. Department of Justice (DoJ) seized approximately 69,369 Bitcoins from a hacker. The agencies named the person “Individual X,” who was linked to the Silk Road market.
Silk Road was a dark web marketplace that enabled people to purchase and sell drugs and other illegal goods and anonymously use bitcoin to pay for these transactions. Notably, the U.S. authorities shut down this online crime marketplace in 2013.
In the second instance, U.S. agencies seized 94,636 BTC linked to the 2016 hack of Hong Kong-based Bitfinex, one of the world’s largest crypto firms.
On February 8, 2022, the government arrested the couple in this case, Ilya Lichtenstein, 34, and his wife Heather Morgan, 31, in Manhattan in this case. They allegedly planned to launder about 119,754 Bitcoin in more than 2,000 transactions over five years.
On November 9, 2021, law enforcement officers seized more than 51,326 BTC worth over $3.36 billion from a Georgian real estate developer. James Zhong, 32, stole bitcoins from a Silk Road market a decade ago.
The agencies tracked down the stolen virtual assets a year ago when they raided Zhong’s home in Gainesville, Georgia. According to the Doj, this is the largest crypto seizure ever.
Law enforcement agencies and Governments, particularly in the United States, have seized thousands of bitcoins. It shows the struggle behind the scenes to protect users and prosecute violators.
As authorities record success, many financial firms, such as Goldman Sachs and JP Morgan, have started providing cryptocurrency trading services to customers.