Government employees accused of mining cryptocurrencies at public expense
As IT operations manager at the Suffolk County Clerk in New York, Christopher Naples reportedly took advantage of his location to place cryptocurrency mining equipment in various locations in the Riverhead, New York County’s Center, where he works.
Naples has allegedly set up 46 devices for mining cryptocurrencies “in places such as unused electrical panels on walls or under floorboards,” according to a statement posted in AP News on Wednesday.
Mining cryptocurrencies can be an expensive undertaking that sometimes requires task-specific equipment and increases electricity costs wherever mining is set up. Mining equipment can also give off a significant amount of heat, which further adds to the equation.
According to a quote in the statement by Timothy Sini, a district attorney in Suffolk County, “Mining cryptocurrencies requires a large amount of resources and miners need to find a way to cover all electricity and cooling bills. Sini added that Naples “found a way to do it; Unfortunately, it was on the taxpayers’ backs. “
The worker’s efforts allegedly generated $ 6,000 or more in electricity bills that weigh on Suffolk County, the statement said.
Naples faces a range of legal requirements, including aggravated theft, and could face up to 15 years in prison. Courts have released Naples without asking for bail while he awaits further trial.
During Wednesday’s press conference, Sini said, as reported in a Newsday article:
“We will not allow county employees who are already on the state payroll to steal taxpayers’ money and illegally use state funds for their own personal gain.”