Reasoning that Ilya Lichtenstein is a flight risk, a US federal judge ordered his preventive detention and indicated that his wife and accomplice in the crime, Heather Morgan, met the criteria for supervised release.

As The New York Times reported, Chief Judge Beryl Howell of the United States District Court in the District of Columbia ruled in favor of Heather Morgan on terms of supervised release. The judge argued that Morgan’s role in attempting to launder the stolen bitcoins from Bitfinex was significantly outweighed by her husband’s involvement. She was released on $3 million bail and posted her parents’ house as collateral. Rather, Lichtenstein was detained before trial because the judge deemed him a flight risk since he had the motivation to flee and may still have the resources to do so. The duo’s attorney claimed they had no intention of fleeing, citing family ties in the U.S. In addition, the attorney said the husband and wife had frozen embryos in New York planning to conceive a child, which also suggested they have the intention to stay in the country. Lichtenstein and Morgan were recently arrested for conspiring to launder the majority of the 119,754 bitcoins stolen in the infamous Bitfinex hack in 2016. With the price of BTC appreciating over the last six years, the amount stolen is in the billions in terms of value. USD now, making it the largest financial seizure ever made by the Department of Justice. While US authorities, Bitfinex, and affected exchange users have yet to determine what will happen to the recovered bitcoins, Netflix has joined the project and wants to release a documentary about what happened.

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This post Heather Morgan, One of the Defendants in Bitfinex’s $3.6 Billion Bitcoin Case, Released Awaiting Trial

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