Spanish police on the prowl for an illegal marijuana plantation find a cryptocurrency mining farm in its place
Over the past year, multiple tales about oddly-disguised cryptocurrency mines sprang up, many of which turned out to be duds. One such operation initially assumed to be a mining farm turned out to be a lot less sinister. This time around, police in Santiponce, a town in Sevilla, swooped in on what they thought was an illegal marijuana farm but found a bitcoin mining hub instead.
The Spanish Police put out an official press release detailing the nature of the raid (via El Chapuzas Informatico). Over 21 Bitcoin mining ASICs were recovered from the location and what looks like five EVGA GeForce RTX 3080 graphics cards. The equipment, worth over €50,000, generated about €3,500 in revenue per month. The Bitcoin mine in question was relatively new, so it is unlikely that its owners came close to breaking even on their investment. Police are yet to identify who owns the farm in question and are investigating the matter.
Like many other countries in the world, Spain does not have any laws against mining cryptocurrency, and mining is (somewhat) legal in the country. However, the electric connection for the Bitcoin mining farm was illegal and reportedly cost the state €2,000 per month. Spain has one of the highest electricity rates per kWh in Europe, so the budding entrepreneurs must have thought they were better off stealing from the grid, just like the ones who got caught in Malaysia not too long ago.