Headline May 14, 2018/ ''' *BITCOIN -HEIST- BITTERLY* '''


*HIS BRAND IS UPROAR* : THE THEFTS - it was actually three separate thefts over the course of a few weeks, starting December 5. One occurred -

At a compound near the airport, home to a handful of cryptocurrency mining warehouses leased to different companies. The warehouses look like hangers, though instead of containing jets -

These are densely packed with computers, numbered and neatly arranged on shelves. Giant fans  hum noisily overhead.............   

After the recent series of cryptocurrency-related crimes, many of them gunpoint stickups of people forced to empty their virtual wallets -

A theft like this seemed all but inevitable.

In a twist that seemed from a cheesy caper film, the place also carried Katrin Jakobsdottir, the prime minister of Iceland.
''We did not chat,'' Mr. Stefansson said, calling from a prison near Amsterdam.

Speaking by phone in a gloomy monotone, he said, he had worn a baseball cap and avoided the gaze of everyone on the plane.
''I kept my head down as much as I could.''

*And Iceland is one of the world's premier venues for mining operators, who are drawn to the country's cheap electricity and chilly weather, which helps keep computers cold*.

Mr. Stefansson would not discuss what the media has named The Big Bitcoin Heist.

Instead, he focused on his regret for having fled, a decision that he said, he rued as soon as he landed in Sweden and realized that his mug shot was all over the media.

''I did not eat and had a constant knot in the pit of my stomach,'' he said....... ''I was disappointed in myself for making my family suffer and nervous about being recognised.''

Detectives in Reykjavik, the capital of Iceland, would   like   to   have a conversation of their own with Mr. Stefansson, and they will get the opportunity, now that he has returned to Iceland, having been extradited on Friday.

He returned to a country riveted by his case. calls have poured into a tip line with theories about where the computer's are stored and, until recently, where Mr. Stefansson might be found.

''I can tell you the Icelandic public has been very interested,'' Olafur Kjartansson, the lead police investigator, said in an interview.

''I'm sitting in the public hot baths and friends, and colleagues will say to me, ''Did you find him?''

The theft suggests that security at some of the Iceland's Bitcoin mining operations has yet to catch up to the value of the commodity, now trading at around $9,000 a piece.

If the warehouse that was robbed were digging for gold instead of running an algorithm in a quest for cryptocurrency, odds are that the crime would have been far trickier to pull off.

Then again, this is Iceland, a place that seems to presume its citizens will abide by the law.

An astonishing amount of social trust is embedded in society, a phenomenon that is especially evident in the country's penal system.

Mr. Stefansson had been kept at Sogn, which is known as an open prison. Inmates live in their own rooms, which have flat-screen TVs, and talk on their own cellphones.

Inmates earn the equivalent of a $4 an hour cooking, cleaning maintaining a chicken coop.

''It's a friendly atmosphere,'' said Gudmundur Thoroddsson, a prisoner advocate who was recently released from Sogn. ''there's a good relationship with the guards. Never any fighting or arguing.''

The prison at the foot of a treeless hill and and looks more like a rural two-story home with a penitentiary.

During a recent visit, the entrance road was blocked by the sort of gate used by pay-by-the-hour garages.

The property, which includes a soccer field, is surrounded by wire fencing a few feet high.

Mr. Stefansson wouldn't have needed a running start to jump it.

The night he bolted, he started browsing for  international flights on his cellphone at about 11, he said in the interview. After booking one under an assumed name, he opened his window and left.

He claims that he walked a mile to Route 1, the road that rings the island, and hitchhiked 59 miles to Keflavik, a town near the airport. [The police maintain that an accomplice drove him]. From there, he called a cab.

Once in Stockholm, he traveled via train taxi and ferry to Germany, through Denmark. There he met  ''individuals'' who drove him to Amsterdam.

He enjoyed just three hours of  freedom in the Dutch capital. The local authorities had been tipped off by two pedestrians with a cellphone photograph of a person they believed was the much-publicized  wanted man.

Soon after, an officer approached Mr. Stefansson and demanded identification.

''I was just walking when it happened,'' he said.

The police in Iceland have said little about any evidence they have linking Mr. Stefansson to the computer theft. It was actually three separate thefts over the course of few weeks, starting Dec 5.

One occurred at a compound near the airport, home to a handful of cryptocurrency mining  warehouses leased to different companies.

The warehouses look like hangars, though instead of containing jets these are densely packed with computers, numbered and neatly arranged on shelves.

Giant fans hum noisily overhead.

''If you spent a day here, you would probably go deaf,'' shouted Mia Molnar of Genesis Mining, which is based in  Hong Kong  and mines coins for Ethereum, a  Bitcoin rival.

The Honor and Serving of the  latest Operational Research on  Freedom, Heists, Cryptocurrency and State of the World continues.

With respectful dedication to the Grandparents, Parents,  Leaders, Students, Professors and Teachers of Iceland, and then the World.

See Ya all ''register'' on WSSCIW. blogspot. com  - !WOW! The World Students Society and  Twitter- !E-WOW! - the Ecosystem 2011:

'''Fixers And Fairs'''

Good Night and God Bless

SAM Daily Times - the Voice of the Voiceless


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