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Latam Insights: Bitcoin Farm Found at Venezuelan Jail, Bill Protecting Crypto From Seizure Advances in Brazil

Welcome to Latam Insights, a compendium of Latin America’s most relevant crypto and economic news during the last week. In this issue: a Bitcoin mining farm is discovered during a raid on a Venezuelan jail, a bill that protects crypto from seizure advances in Brazil, and the Chilean police find a Bitcoin farm during a drug raid.

Bitcoin Farm Found in Venezuelan Jail

A Bitcoin mining farm was dismantled during a mega raid on the Venezuelan penitentiary center of Tocoron, located in the Aragua state. The raid, which involved the participation of more than 11,000 officers, found an undisclosed number of Bitcoin miners inside a makeshift mining farm, which was allegedly operated by the gang that held control of the national jail, called “Aragua’s Train.”

During the raid, the police also found drugs, rifles and ammo, C4 explosives, and more eccentric elements, like a disco where events were held, a swimming pool, a baseball stadium, and even a zoo.

Authorities have not issued statements on how long the mining farm operated inside the jail or if they had seized the funds that were obtained by the operation of this farm. Nonetheless, after the raid, the Tocoron Penitentiary will be closed, with more than 1,600 inmates being transferred to other jails in Venezuela.

Bill Protecting Crypto From Seizure Advances in Brazil

A bill that protects digital assets from creditor seizures is advancing in the deputy chamber of the Brazilian Congress. The bill, which also forbids the confiscation of salaries, pensions, and money in savings accounts in amounts of up to 40 minimum wages, was modified by Deputy Fernando Marangoni, who called to include cryptocurrency as part of its scope.

However, the final modification included the term “digital assets” instead of “cryptocurrency,” and will have to be reviewed by the Constitution, Justice, and Citizenship Commission of the Deputy Chamber.

Chilean Police Find Bitcoin Farm During Drug Operation

The Chilean Intelligence Police found a Bitcoin mining operation during a drug raid in southern Santiago. During Operation “Lucerna,” the police found 36 kilograms of cannabis, ecstasy, and ketamine pills. But they also stumbled upon a room with 19 Bitcoin miners, of which only 10 were active.

Eduardo Gatica, head of the Anti-Narcotics Brigade, stated this operation was directed to terminate a series of violent crimes linked to a drug trafficking ring. He stated:

It is the first time that drug trafficking has been so directly linked to cryptocurrency virtual data mining. It had not happened before in the country.

Gatica stated that cryptocurrency mining allowed these groups to launder assets, turning dirty money into clean money ready to be introduced in the market.

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