July 27, 2017

Breaking open the MtGox case, part 1

Earlier today news broke of an arrest in Greece of a Russian national suspected of running a large-scale money laundering operation focused on Bitcoin. The man has since been publicly identified as Alexander Vinnik, 38, and over $4 billion USD is said to have been trafficked through the operation since 2011.

We won't beat around the bush with it: Vinnik is our chief suspect for involvement in the MtGox theft (or the laundering of the proceeds thereof). This is the result of years of patient work, and these findings were surely independently uncovered by other investigators as well. Everyone who worked on the case have patiently kept quiet while forwarding findings to law enforcement, so as not to tip suspects off and to maximize the chances of arrests.

With such an arrest actually happening, we think today might — finally — be the day when we can begin talking about what we've actually been doing all this time and what we found. Thank you for your patience.

July 12, 2017

Comments on the Mark Karpelès trial

July 11 was the first day of proceedings for the anticipated trial of Mark Karpelès, CEO of the bankrupt MtGox bitcoin exchange. Karpelès was charged with creation and manipulation of private electronic records, as well as embezzlement of customer funds, or embezzlement of company funds, or breach of trust, in that order.

I was present in the courtroom for the entire first day, and I expect there will be a lot of interpretations and extrapolations based on the limited early information that will no doubt circulate online and in the media, so I will attempt to flesh out and explain what is actually going on through some brief commentary.