US Government Announces Final Silk Road’s Bitcoin Auction

The US government on Monday announced that it is auctioning the last remaining Bitcoins belonging to the now-defunct underground marketplace Silk Road.

According to the US Marshal Service’s (USMS) press release, the auction of 44,341 Bitcoins (nearly $1.5 million at press time) will take place on November 5 this year, from 8 am to 2 pm. The Bitcoins will be offered in 22 blocks: 21 blocks of 2,000 Bitcoins and 1 block of around 2,341 Bitcoins. The auction winners will be announced the very next day — on November 6.

The agency further stated:

“The registration period starts Oct. 19 and runs until noon Nov. 2, at which time potential bidders must have completed all registration requirements. Registration documents that were submitted for the Marshals’ previous bitcoin auctions are not valid for this auction; interested bidders must submit new registration documents to be considered for this auction.”

The USMS had seized around 144,000 BTC from Silk Road’s convicted operator Ross Ulbricht during a raid in 2013. Since then, the agency has liquidated the money in two different auctions. The first auction, held in June 2014, was able to sell off 30,000 Bitcoins to renowned venture capitalist Tim Draper; while the second auction, for 50,000 Bitcoins, was also partially won by Draper, alongside Barry Silbert.

The bidder turnout in the second auction was recorded to be a way lower than the first (around 75 percent). Many blamed the declining value of Bitcoin as one of the major contributing factors for such a lower turnout. It was hugely volatile, and was fluctuating between $360 and $370 at that time.

The USMS, however, was able to auction the entire Bitcoin blocks.

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