Accused of having illegally connected his crypto farm to the electricity grid, a man was sentenced to two years in prison. The move comes as Russian authorities move to address the lack of proper regulation for the mining of cryptocurrencies, which has become a popular source of income in Russia.
Illegal crypto farm burns 1.3 million kWh in Russia
A 39-year-old minor was found guilty of theft of electricity by the municipal court of Syktyvkar, capital of the Komi republic. The equipment of mining were installed in a building rented to an industrial company and were illegally connected to a nearby transformer station.
The individual managed the crypto farm for at least five years and used 1.3 million kilowatt hours (kWh) of unpaid electricity to mine cryptocurrencies, the district attorney’s office said in a statement. Press release published on Tuesday, January 18. The stolen electricity is worth around 5.7 million rubles (nearly $65,700 at the time of writing).
According to the document, the minor, whose identity has not been revealed, received a two-year suspended prison sentence and a two-year probation period for his activities of mining between 2015 and 2020.
Mining causes overloads of power grids in Russia
In the absence of rules adopted by the government, the mining Cryptocurrency has gained ground in Russia not only as a profitable business sector, but also as an additional source of income for many ordinary citizens. In some areas, local authorities have complained that the expansion of mining had caused damage to the electrical network which is struggling to meet the increasing loads.
In Irkutsk Oblast, one of the Russian regions with the lowest electricity tariffs ($0.01 per kWh for households), an electricity utility filed 85 complaints this year against minors at home. A recent report revealed that the company has already won nine lawsuits for which it expects to receive 18.7 million rubles (217,000 euros) in compensation.
Local authorities call for general crypto regulations
Officials in Moscow and some other Russian regions have made several calls to acknowledge the mining as an economic activity and therefore tax it. This would give authorities the ability to charge miners more for the energy they consume.
A working group in the State Duma is currently preparing regulations for a number of cryptocurrency-related activities, including the mining.
In December, the government allowed Russian regions to determine local electricity tariffs in residential areas themselves. This decision should affect amateur miners who will pay more after reaching a certain consumption threshold.
the mining home cryptocurrency has become so popular in Russia largely due to the cheap electricity offered to the population.
Source: bitcoin news
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