Chinese official gets life sentence for illegal Bitcoin mining, corruption

By: Bharggavi Ssayee

Chinese official gets life sentence for illegal Bitcoin mining, corruption

August 22, 2023 11:33 PM

The $329 million Bitcoin mining operation Xiao Yi ran was linked to allegations of corruption and abuse of authority.

An official in the Chinese government was found guilty of corruption and illegal business dealings involving the management of a Bitcoin (BTC) mining operation that raked in 2.4 billion Chinese yuan ($329 million). 

Local media have reported→ that on August 22nd, former Jiangxi Provincial Political Consultative Conference Party Group member and vice chairman Xiao Yi was sentenced to life in jail for corruption and abuse of authority by the Intermediate People's Court of Hangzhou City.

The alleged corrupt behavior occurred between 2008 and 2021 and has nothing to do with cryptocurrency. Offering financial and electric bill subsidies to Jiumu Group Genesis Technologies, a corporation situated in the city of Fuzhou that at one point controlled more than 160,000 Bitcoin mining machines, is at the heart of the abuse of power charges that stretch from 2017 to 2021.

 A Chinese individual was convicted to nine months in prison on August 14 for gaining $20 by facilitating a friend's purchase of Tether (USDT). 


Ex-Chinese official Xiao Yi is currently awaiting punishment. 
Source: Hangzhou Intermediate People's Court

According to the prosecution, Yi "covered up" the mining operation by ordering the appropriate departments to forge statistical records and reclassify electricity use. Between the years of 2017 and 2020, Jiumu used 10% of Fuzhou's total electricity supply. The presiding judge of the Hangzhou People's Court stated in a letter that Yi had admitted guilt and expressed regret, actively returned the stolen funds, and all bribes and their proceeds had been seized.

China has thus far stopped short of outright forbidding possession of cryptocurrencies, while having banned all forms of cryptocurrency transactions, exchange activities, and fiat-to-crypto conversion. Due to China's Bitcoin ban, a Chinese court declared on August 3 that a $10 million Bitcoin lending contract was null and void, rendering all debt recovery efforts void.