Paraguayan Authorities Shut Down Largest Illegal Bitcoin Mining Farm

Over 2,700 Miners Disconnected from National Power Grid in Saltos de Guaira

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  • Paraguayan authorities have shut down an illegal bitcoin mining farm with over 2,700 miners.
  • The operation was located near a national power facility in Saltos de Guaira.
  • The farm bypassed electric meters to steal power directly from the grid.
  • Authorities used advanced detection techniques including AI and thermal drones.
  • An internal audit is investigating potential involvement of ANDE officials.

Paraguayan authorities have dismantled the largest illegal bitcoin mining operation discovered in the country. Located in Saltos de Guaira, near a national power facility, this illicit setup included over 2,700 bitcoin miners connected directly to Paraguay’s electric grid.

Detection and Disconnection

The Paraguayan National Power Administration (ANDE) and local prosecutors carried out the operation on May 28.

They found that many of these machines were bypassing electric meters to siphon off electricity without being accounted for by ANDE. Along with disconnecting the miners, authorities confiscated five electric transformers with a total installed capacity of 7,150 kilo-volt-amperes.

The detection process involved using supervisory control systems (SCADA), artificial intelligence software to monitor load current peaks, and thermal drones that identified hot spots in the area.

This combination of technologies enabled authorities to pinpoint and act against the illegal setup effectively.

Internal Investigation Launched

Given its proximity – less than 2.5 kilometers – from a local power plant, suspicions arose about possible involvement by ANDE officials in facilitating this illegal activity. In response, ANDE has initiated an internal audit to determine if any employees were complicit in setting up or maintaining this unauthorized connection.

This recent bust follows another crackdown last week where Paraguay detected two other illegal bitcoin mining sites. These operations led to the seizure of over 550 additional bitcoin miners.

Authorities are committed to continuing their efforts against such illicit activities that drain resources from Paraguay’s national grid and undermine legal energy consumption practices.

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