The U.S. government has become a major holder of Bitcoin, acquiring around 200,000 coins worth $5 billion through seizures related to criminal activities. These digital assets have been seized from cybercriminals and darknet markets and are stored securely offline in encrypted hardware wallets controlled by federal agencies such as the Justice Department and the IRS. The fate of these Bitcoin holdings has attracted attention from crypto traders, as any decision to sell them could impact prices in the digital asset market. However, the government's approach is not driven by market speculation or timing. Instead, the accumulation of Bitcoin is a result of the lengthy legal process involved in confiscating and managing these assets. The government does not actively trade or time the market but follows the timing of the legal process. The process from initial seizure to final liquidation of these assets can take several years, and during this time, the value of Bitcoin can appreciate significantly.️ The U.S. government has seized assets from various cases, including the Bitfinex hack and the collapse of the FTX exchange. When a government agency seizes a crypto asset, it does not immediately become the owner. Only after a court issues a final forfeiture order does the government take ownership and transfer the tokens to the U.S. Marshals Service, responsible for liquidating seized assets. The Marshals Service has adapted its liquidation process to align with the evolving crypto industry, now selling seized digital currencies through crypto exchanges in multiple batches over an extended period to prevent adverse market impacts. The agency's goal is to dispose of assets in a timely manner at fair market value, with proceeds often going towards reimbursing victims or covering expenses related to investigating crimes and acquiring necessary resources.
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