Awkward Tech Couple Accused From trying to launder billions of dollars from stolen bitcoin it was temporarily split. The husband, Elijah Lichtenstein, 34, who has been in prison since their arrests in early February, remains behind bars, while his wife, Heather Morgan, 31, has been released on bail by a Washington, D.C. judge, The Washington Post. Reports.
On Monday, US District Court Chief Justice Beryl A. Howell’s evidence against the couple was “too heavy to be overwhelming”, but eventually allowed Morgan to post $3 million in bond – a bond package that included her parents’ home. Meanwhile, Liechtenstein’s $5 million offer was rejected, and he was ordered to remain in a Washington, D.C. prison while the two await trial for money laundering and conspiracy to defraud the United States. Up to 25 years in prison.
In case you missed it, the duo accused Attempting to launder a huge fortune – about $4.5 billion in cryptocurrencies – that was previously stolen from Bitfinex during hacking incident 2016. The case has received widespread attention due to the goofy personalities of the couple, as evidenced by their open and extensive activity on social media. Morgan, in particular, has attracted attention due to her eccentric career in hip-hop, which she perpetrated under the rap moniker “Razelkan”. As expected, there is a documentary series of the couple’s story Already ordered by Netflix.
Court documents filed by the plaintiffs in the case refer to the couple as “savvy cybercriminals and money launderers who present a serious escape risk” and make a case against the couple being granted bail, citing their foreign relations:
“Liechtenstein is a Russian and US citizen with dual citizenship and holds a valid Russian passport; law enforcement confiscated Liechtenstein US and Russian passports during a search warrant on January 5, 2022. Liechtenstein renewed his Russian passport in 2019. Both defendants traveled frequently prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, Travel records indicate that they had visited Ukraine as recently as September 2019.”
Other documents provide additional interesting details. The Wall Street Journal reports thatIn a recent arrest warrant, prosecutors appear to have highlighted the lyrics of one of Morgan’s many rap songs as an indication of her hacking abilities. “Spear phish your password / all your money convert,” in a clear reference to “the hacking technique of phishing to gain access to a user’s account password, and then transfer all of the user’s money from the account,” put forth by the lawyers.
Previous Reports have already noticed That the couple apparently had a lot of suspicious things inside their apartment – the kind of things that would make you think they…maybe they were about to be suspicious. This included a ziplock bag marked “Cell Phones” which, of course, contained cell phones. Prosecutors also said Liechtenstein’s desk contained “hollow” books – the kind a spy or evil comic book villain might have – although it’s not entirely clear what they were used for. The duo was too Russian bank accountsand previously traveled to Ukraine in 2019 to obtain false identity documents, reports indicated.
There’s still a lot we don’t know about this case — for example, the whereabouts of a pool of funds. Prosecutors previously noted that around $328 million worth of cryptocurrency remains unknown and that it is not clear where it might be.
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