French Programmer Sent Bitcoin Donations to Far-Right Activists Who Participated in the US Capitol Riots
A crypto forensic analysis reveals that a French donor sent over $500,000 worth of bitcoin (BTC) to far-right activists in the United States. The half-million dollars went to the groups that took part in the pro-Trump riots in the U.S. Capitol.
According to Chainalysis, the unnamed donor sent 28.15 BTC (worth $522,000 at the transfer time) on Dec. 6, 2020, to 22 separate addresses in a single transaction. Per the report, many of those wallets belong to personalities tied to far-right activists in the U.S.
Yahoo News detailed that Vdare (anti-immigration organization), the Daily Stormer (right-wing website), and Nick Fuentes were among the crypto donation recipients. Alt-right streamer Ethan Ralph is also on the list that Chainalysis published regarding the half a million dollar donation.
The blockchain analytics firm clarified that there is no evidence yet on Fuentes’ participation in the Capitol’s riots. However, it quoted previous statements from him asking people to protest Congressional certification of Joe Biden’s victory.
But Chainalysis still highlighted that a BTC donation worth over $250,000 sent on Dec. 8, 2020, is by far the largest crypto donation Fuentes has ever received.
Regarding the French donor’s identity, there is information that the wallet used to arrange the payments has been active since 2013. The blockchain analytics firm suggests he could be a “relatively early adopter of bitcoin whose holdings have grown in value significantly.”
One of the BTC addresses associated with the donor’s wallet is registered on Nameid — a service that allows users to associate their online identity with their BTC address.
Chainalysis found that the crypto donor is a French computer programmer after searching through his email address. After he sent the donations, he published what seems to be a suicide note on a personal blog. The report, which indicates the motivation behind his donations, reads:
According to Yahoo News, Federal authorities and law enforcement agencies are also investigating the source of funds.
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Mt Gox Creditors Asked to Approve a Settlement Proposal Drafted by Coinlab
On January 15, the public was made aware of a deal between the firm Coinlab Inc., the Mt Gox bankruptcy trustee, Nobuaki Kobayashi, alongside MGIFLP, a subsidiary of Fortress Investment Group. According to the proposal, Mt Gox creditors will be able to claim as much as 90% of the bitcoin held by Kobayashi and the Tokyo court. Despite the recent reports, creditors still have to approve the proposal made by the company.
Last week, Mt Gox creditors were told there was a new online system dedicated to the claims they hold. Essentially, the Mt Gox creditors are a band of former customers of the exchange who want to obtain some of the funds lost during the breach seven years ago. Mt Gox was a bitcoin trading exchange and at the height of 2013, the platform was estimated to handle 70% of all BTC transactions.
Mt Gox was hacked for 850,000 BTC and the exchange closed its doors in February 2014 and filed for bankruptcy. 200,000 BTC was found after the bankruptcy and for the last seven years creditors have been trying to get their claim of stolen BTC.
*COINLAB SAYS AGREEMENT SUBJECT TO CREDITOR ACCEPTANCE
*CREDITORS CAN CLAIM 90% OF BITCOIN THEY ARE OWED FROM MT. GOX
*COINLAB REACHES DEAL WITH MT. GOX CREDITORS OVER BITCOIN CLAIMS
story to follow
— Matt Leising (@mattleising) January 15, 2021
A number of Mt Gox creditors, experts, and even the exchange’s founder have reported during the last few years that the company Coinlab Inc., led by Peter Vessenes has delayed the settlement proceedings. This is due to the fact that Coinlab has a litigation case against Mt Gox and former CEO Mark Karpeles. In 2019, following a delay from the Mt Gox trustee, bitcoin security specialists Wizsec published a scathing critique of the Coinlab claim for US$16 billion and alleged that it was “the elephant in the room causing this delay.”
Now it seems Coinlab wants to cut a deal with Mt Gox creditors as long as they vote to agree upon what the company has offered. Bloomberg contributor Matt Leising reported on Friday that Coinlab has come to an agreement with MGIFLP and the Mt Gox bankruptcy trustee Nobuaki Kobayashi.
The deal will allow creditors to obtain 90% of the BTC remaining under Kobayashi and the Tokyo court’s supervision. Leising’s report notes that creditors have to approve the deal and they can also wait for the lawsuit to settle. Leising is also the Bloomberg reporter that wrote about a so-called Satoshi claimant dubbed “Duality.”
Leising also discussed the story on Friday afternoon, and a number of people on Twitter responded to his tweets. Arcane Assets CIO, Eric Wall, wrote “Funny joke Matt,” and a number of people also talked about the deal on Reddit.
On the Mt Gox Insolvency Discussion Sub on Reddit, there were a number of people disgruntled with Coinlab’s deal. One person discussing the subject on the insolvency subreddit said that Coinlab would get 10% of the remaining cut, while another individual called Leising’s tweet “fake news.”
What do you think about the deal set forth by Coinlab in Leising’s recent report? Let us know what you think about this subject in the comments section below.
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Can Bitcoin Replace the US Dollar?
Humans have always created a form of money to serve as an exchange for goods and services. People have used rocks, metals, paper bills, and gold as money. Now, we have bitcoin as a digital currency picking up pace. Many people have asked whether bitcoin can replace the US dollar as the world’s global currency. First, what are some of the features that money should have? They are:
The US dollar has been a predominant and well-recognized currency for over 100 years. This currency is one of the most traded fiat currencies. Before the second world war, gold was the standard for all the currencies on the globe. The establishment of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) and the World Bank and other factors saw the rise of the US dollar.
When the economy is unstable, many individuals want to place their financial resources in a reliable currency. People all over the globe recognize the US dollar as such kind of currency. They are confident that the dollar will maintain its value even when their local currency drops in value. Large corporate institutions and Government authorities also invest in the US dollar. The dollar has remained at the top because of America’s core role in global issues and the robustness of its economy.
An anonymous person or group of persons under the name Satoshi Nakamoto created bitcoin in 2009. Bitcoin is the world’s first cryptocurrency. Bitcoin is not physical money. It works on blockchain technology. Digital currency uses peer to peer technology to facilitate payments and transactions. Like how central banks pump money into the economy, people mine bitcoins to bring it into circulation. The maximum number of bitcoins that can come into circulation is 21 million BTC. Unlike fiat currencies like the dollar, bitcoin uses an algorithm to pump coins into circulation. The introduction of bitcoins has triggered the rise of other types of cryptocurrencies collectively known as altcoins. A well-known altcoin is Ethereum.
Before bitcoin can replace the US dollar, it has to step up in some areas.
Regulation: The US dollar is under the firm control of an organized government. The same thing cannot be said about bitcoin. Bitcoin is a decentralized form of currency under no one’s control. While we don’t know if bitcoin can get regulated in the nearest future, governmental control has taken a blow with bitcoin on the stage.
Volatility: A currency has to be a stable medium of exchange of goods and services. The US dollar has performed excellently well in this sector. Individuals and corporate institutions have been able to use it for standard trading and transaction. Unfortunately, Bitcoin is yet to attain this level. The extreme volatility of bitcoin has been bad for business. A typical example of this occurred in 2017 when bitcoin rose from about $900 to about $20,000, with a climb of almost 2,000%. People who had bought bitcoin before such a rise will be happy with this rise. Conversely, the cryptocurrency saw a solid crash when it went below $3,500 in late 2018. By 2019, bitcoin rose to about $10,000 in the middle of 2019.
These extreme fluctuations reduce the ability of bitcoin to serve as a medium of exchange. The US dollar also had periods when its value changed due to inflation and unforeseen economic circumstances. However, its price fluctuations can be so low that most people don’t notice sometimes.
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Store of value: Most economic scientists believe that bitcoin has not fulfilled all the criteria to serve as a value store. However, Bitcoin has done well in this area for a couple of reasons. It is scarce, as only 21 million units of bitcoin will ever be in existence. Bitcoins are also portable as you can carry them around within a hot or cold wallet. Also, it is divisible into smaller units. However, the cryptocurrency has no intrinsic value. Bitcoin has no value outside the blockchain network. If the internet is down, the cryptocurrency has no real-world business applications.
Furthermore, bitcoin can only be seen as a measure of value when people are ready to spend it actively. Most people keep their bitcoins as an investment instead of spending them. People who don’t understand blockchain technology are scared to convert their hard-earned cash into bitcoins. As long as this continues, bitcoin cannot overtake the US dollar.
It is not advisable to write off bitcoin. The cryptocurrency has the potential to replace the US dollar. However, it has to make improvements in certain areas. Its extreme volatility is one major problem. No one knows what will happen in the nearest future. Whether Bitcoin will replace the US dollar or not, time will tell.
Author: Daily News Egypt