Illegal Bitcoin mining operation raided for using state electricity

Image courtesy of KhaoSod

Police and officials from the Provincial Electricity Authority (PEA) raided a Bitcoin mining operation illicitly using state electricity, incurring monthly losses of 10 million baht. Despite finding over 700 mining rigs, only 59 were seized, with evidence of the rest being moved.

Head of the Photharam Police Station in Ratchaburi, Police Colonel Chatchon Narawutiporn, along with PEA officials executed a search warrant issued by the Ratchaburi Court.

The warrant was for the Minor Union Company, located in Photharam District, Ratchaburi. The raid aimed to confiscate Bitcoin mining equipment and peripheral devices as evidence for ongoing investigations into illegal activities.

Investigating officials detected irregularities in the company’s electricity usage, which did not match the registered data. Upon arrival, officers identified 41 year old Wiraphon, the company’s caretaker. After presenting and reading the court warrant, the team proceeded with the search.

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Opening the factory doors, officials were stunned to discover a fully operational Bitcoin mining farm. The facility was divided into rooms containing various mining rigs and servers used for cloud mining cryptocurrency. At the back of the factory, three shipping containers had been converted into additional mining spaces, bringing the total number of installed rigs to over 700.

Despite the vast setup, authorities managed to seize only 59 rigs, with the rest having been moved. Additionally, the site’s CCTV memory cards and server devices were missing, suggesting a deliberate attempt to hinder the investigation.

PEA officials have temporarily seized all equipment and transferred it to Photharam Police Station for further examination to determine the power consumption of each device to assess the total financial damage accurately.

Preliminary investigations revealed tampering with the electricity meters, allowing the factory to use more power than recorded officially.

The seized Bitcoin mining rigs, each valued in the hundreds of thousands of baht, amounted to a total worth of approximately 5.9 million baht. The operation faces legal charges for theft of state electricity and misappropriation of public resources, with initial estimates indicating monthly losses of 10 million baht due to illegal electricity usage.

In addition to the tampering, the company is also under investigation for potential connections to other illicit activities, reported KhaoSod

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Ryan Turner

Ryan is a journalism student from Mahidol University with a passion for history, writing and delivering news content with a rich storytelling narrative.

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