A group of people arrested for operating Bitcoin miners without a license in Venezuela were released, after the non-origin of the arrest carried out by police forces days ago was determined.
The Superintendency of Crypto Assets and Related Activities (SUNACRIP), the entity that governs mining in the South American country, attended together with personnel from the Public Ministry to intercede for the release of the 6 miners detained in the city of Puerto Ordaz , in Bolívar state.
This information was confirmed to CriptoNoticias by José Ángel Álvarez Mayora, president of the National Association of Cryptocurrencies (ASONACRIP), a non-governmental organization for the promotion of cryptocurrencies in Venezuela. SUNACRIP has not issued any statement or responded to our query on the matter , at the time of writing this article.
Through a statement , ASONACRIP celebrated the action of the state entity to achieve the release of the miners. In this regard, the organization stressed that digital mining activity is legal in Venezuela and operating miners without a license represents an offense punishable by fines , but not a crime. That is, miners cannot be detained.
Additionally, the statement highlights the fact that no official has the power to stop or interfere in activities of cryptocurrency miners without participation or authorization of the SUNACRIP, entity in charge of determining the faults in the matter.
This Thursday, July 15, as reported by CriptoNoticias, they were arrested six people in Puerto Ordaz, for operating Bitcoin miners without the permits granted by the regulator. In two separate operations they found a total of 25 mining machines without a license, which were also detained. It is unknown if the equipment was returned to its owners or is still in the hands of the authorities.
Detentions and retention of miners in Venezuela
Despite the statements made by ASONACRIP, in Venezuela it has become a common practice for police or military officials to detain people for operate with Bitcoin miners, in addition to seizing their equipment .
Only this year, we can mention cases in Bolívar, the same entity where this new arrest occurred, Portuguesa, Barinas o Carabobo.
Just a couple of weeks ago, during a meeting sponsored by the SUNACRIP It was determined that the police forces could not go to homes for cases of mining without a license, without the presence of officials from the regulatory body. At that meeting were, in addition to the government institution, members of the Carabobo state police, miners and members of ASONACRIP, as this newspaper reported.
Despite the obstacles for miners, Venezuela is one of the countries with the largest incursion in Bitcoin mining in the world, even with military organizations having their own mining farms. Studies from the University of Cambridge and the company CoinShares have exposed it.
Bitcoin mining is already so entrenched in the country that a historical museum about the equipment dedicated to this activity is about to open its doors in the capital, Caracas, this Saturday July 17.