Nine nabbed for bitcoin mining computer equipment theft

The stolen bitcoin mining machines and power supply unit recovered by police after they were sold online by the suspects. — Picture by Kenneth Tee
The stolen bitcoin mining machines and power supply unit recovered by police after they were sold online by the suspects. — Picture by Kenneth Tee

SERDANG, Feb 27 — Police have arrested nine suspects for their involvement in several bitcoin mining computer equipment thefts amounting to at least RM1 million since last month.

Serdang police chief Assistant Commissioner Megat Mohamad Aminuddin Megat Alias said police received a total of five reports from January 17 until February 16 in the district concerning the computer equipment thefts.

“Of the five reports, a total of 153 mining machines and power supply units (PSU) were reported stolen by the victims.

“A police taskforce was then established to address the thefts led by the district’s Criminal Investigations Department chief following the reports,” he said.

Megat Mohamad Aminuddin said police managed to recover 57 computer equipment used for bitcoin mining worth at least RM500,000, of which 28 of them were PSUs.

He said the nine suspects in their 20s and 40s were detained in six simultaneous raids throughout Selangor, Klang Valley and Kuching, Sarawak following police tip-offs beginning Friday.

Initial investigation revealed all the suspects confessed to selling and buying stolen bitcoin mining computer equipment online locally on social media and online marketplaces, with each set costing between RM16,000 to RM20,000.

Police is also tracking down one more suspect believed to be the main accomplice and have several leads including positive fingerprint samples obtained from the crime scene.

“We urged those who bought such equipments online to get in touch with the police because investigation is ongoing,” he said.

On January 25, over 40 units of the Antminer S9 bitcoin mining machine, and PSU-Bitmain power supply blocks worth RM600,000 were stolen between midnight and 9am from a car accessory shop in Puncak Jalil, Serdang.

Close-circuit television recording footage obtained by police showed four unidentified suspects committing the burglary.

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