Authorities in Abkhazia, the partially recognized South Caucasus republic, discovered and closed eight crypto mining farms in just two weeks. Since the beginning of June, law enforcement agencies have taken more than 300 mining devices offline and fined one operator.
Over 300 mining facilities in Abkhazia cut off the power supply
From June 6th to June 14th, the police in Abkhazia found eight facilities for mining cryptocurrencies that violated the nationwide ban on digital coinage. Law enforcement agencies unplugged nearly 350 units of mining hardware.
The raids were carried out by the Interior Ministry and local police officers in several regions of the South Caucasian Republic. Three of the illegal mining farms are located in the capital Sukhumi, where law enforcement agencies have shut down 17 mining facilities and imposed administrative fines on their owners.
Another three facilities were discovered in the Gudauta district, where police unplugged 128 mining equipment. The crypto miners have been sealed, the ministry said in a press release posted on its website this week.
Largest crypto mining farm discovered in the Gali region
The largest cryptocurrency farm was in the Gali district. The facility had 184 mining rigs. Representatives from the local utility company estimated they used 170 kilowatts of electricity and fined the operator 408,000 Russian rubles (around $ 5,660). The mining farm was disconnected from the grid.
During inspections in the Gagra district, the Abkhaz authorities discovered another 17 minting machines that burned an estimated 28.5 kilowatts of electrical energy. These rigs were also shut down and sealed.
The Ministry of Interior of the breakaway Republic of Georgia, in violation of the region’s latest regulations, is conducting daily checks to identify facilities mining cryptocurrencies. Earlier this year, the Sukhumi government extended a temporary ban on cryptocurrency mining until March 31, 2022. High fines and criminal liability were also introduced for the illegal use of electricity to mint digital currencies.
The restrictions were first enacted in late 2018, when a surge in mining activity put the Russian-backed de facto state face to face with an energy crisis. In early 2019, Abkhazian utility Chernomorenergo closed 15 mining farms with a total output of 8,950 kilowatts, claiming this was a temporary measure.
In addition to the ongoing search for new operational crypto farms, the interior ministry of the partially recognized republic also regularly checks previously closed mining farms. Police officers visited 89 such facilities this month.
What do you think of the ongoing crackdown on crypto mining in Abkhazia? Let us know in the comments section below.
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