The Russian Federal Customs Service has launched an investigation into the importer of Bitcoin mining devices in connection with the alleged non-payment of customs duties.
The Far Eastern Commercial and Industrial Company (DTPK) allegedly did not pay about $ 1.2 million for 6,012 ASIC miners produced by Bitmain and imported from August 2017 to February 2018, according to a search warrant of July 17.
It is reported that DTPK provided the customs service with fabricated documents with incorrect equipment prices. The list included devices Bitmain Antminer S9-13.5, L3 + and models D3, as well as batteries for them, the document says.
The company also informed Customs that it received mining devices from the Korean firm MSR Co. through Hong Kong based company Manli. However, when the customs service contacted the company, MSR stated that it did not have a contract with DTPK, except for the expired contract in 2012. The search warrant states:
“At an unspecified time, but no later than August 8, 2017, Artem Aleksandrovich Bublik [генеральный директор ДТПК] participated in a criminal conspiracy with unidentified persons. The purpose of the conspiracy was to avoid paying large-scale customs duties when importing ASIC miners and batteries for these devices into the Eurasian Economic Union. ”
The public’s investigation became known during the Third International TerraCrypto mining forum, which was held in Moscow on July 25.
According to the founder of Intelion Mining, Alexander Shashkova, the customs service suspected that the imported DTPK miners were in the data center of his company, and on July 18, they sent armed employees to the offices of his company in two cities. Shashkov told the forum participants:
“20 people arrived in Tula with machine guns. In Moscow, 10 people came to the office without machine guns, only with pistols. ”
According to him, Intelion has nothing to do with the miners under investigation, but law enforcement agencies confiscated 2,500 ASIC miners serviced by the company because the clients who owned them did not provide the necessary documentation. In conclusion, he advised colleagues to always check the documents for mining devices, which they take on hosting.
According to market participants, most of the equipment for mining, coming from China to Russia, may not have proper documentation.
“70% of miners from China arrive according to“ gray ”schemes, but we work only legally,” said Alexey Afanasyev, director of sales at Intelion.
The representative of Bitmain in Russia, Yulia Fetisova, said that devices are imported into the country using shadow schemes through companies that buy large quantities of miners from a Beijing manufacturer and resell them to retail customers. She noted:
The gray miners come from Chinese resale companies and do not go through the Russian office. Often, people do not want to wait for supplies from us, so they turn to these companies because they want to get the devices as quickly as possible.
According to her, the waiting time for the delivery of Bitmain equipment has increased this year, and the next delivery of Bitmain S17 ASIC miners will be available no earlier than December.