Russian authorities have investigated a number of cases involving the theft of crypto mining equipment in the past months. A resident of Yaroslavl has just been found guilty of stealing mining hardware worth over $20,000 and sentenced to three years in prison.

Russian Convicted of Stealing Mining Rigs Receives Prison Sentence

A 34-year-old man from the city of Yaroslavl, some 250 kilometers northeast of Moscow, has been found responsible for the theft of equipment for cryptocurrency mining. The hardware’s value has been estimated at 1.6 million rubles (almost $22,000), Forklog reported quoting an announcement by the regional prosecutor’s office.

Investigators were able to establish that in February of this year the defendant managed to enter a friend’s garage where the devices were deployed. He later tried to mint digital coins on his own but failed to set up the equipment properly.

As the perpetrator admitted his guilt, the Zavolzhsky District Court gave him a suspended sentence of three years with a three-year probationary period. The stolen mining rigs have already been returned to the owner.

In the past few years, cryptocurrency mining in basements, garages and homes has grown in popularity in the Russian Federation as an additional income source. And as it involves the use of relatively expensive computer equipment, crime involving the theft of mining hardware has increased as well.

Earlier in August, neighbors stole six rigs with 30 powerful video cards from a room used by a crypto miner in Kursk. According to a report by the local news portal Kurskie Izvestia, the equipment was valued at over 4 million rubles (almost $55,000). The thieves face possible imprisonment for up to seven years, the police said.

A number of similar cases have been reported in Irkutsk, Forklog noted. In June, law enforcement officers detained a 21-year-old man accused of stealing mining hardware worth 120,000 rubles (over $1,600). He was arrested days after police busted a group of several people responsible for the theft of around two dozen mining rigs valued at 2 million rubles (approximately $27,000).

With many of Russia’s regions providing access to cheap electrical energy and cool climate conditions, the country has around 6.84% of the global hashrate, according to a recent report. Household electricity rates are also lower in comparison with the tariffs in many other countries which makes home crypto mining profitable.

Do you think crime targeting crypto miners is on the rise in Russia? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.

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