Bitcoin miner who stole electricity worth £32,000 jailed for his ‘greed’


Singh was caught bypassing electrical mains to power his financial dealings (Picture: BPM Media)

A crypto-trader who bypassed electrical mains and abstracted energy from two unsuspecting businesses has been jailed.

Sanjay Singh, 40, stole electricity worth £32,000 from Firefly nightclub in Loughborough and an industrial unit in Coalville.

The ‘greedy’ trader used it to power his Bitcoin mining machines which he ran next door.

His cryptocurrency mining devices proved his downfall when they triggered a fault at a substation and a power provider went to investigate.

They found Singh had cheated them out of tens out thousands of pounds of electricity.

An inspection of his premises showed he was running more than 200 devices after tampering wiring and diverting electricity from the mains supply to an unmetered fuse box.

The Crown Prosecution Service said he left wires ‘dangerously exposed, which put people at risk of serious harm’.

Singh was due to stand trial at Leicester Crown Court on Tuesday but admitted two counts of abstracting electricity before it began.

He tampered with the wiring at two properties in Leicestershire (Picture: BPM Media)

He was sentenced to 13 months and two weeks in prison.

Andrew Baxter of the CPS said it was ‘highly unusual’ to see stolen electricity used in this way – instead of for other criminal activities such as growing cannabis.

He added: ‘Bitcoin mining is a legitimate legal enterprise. Sanjay Singh was simply acting out of greed.

‘He was in the business to make money from his bitcoin enterprise but was not honest enough to meet the cost of running the machines required to run the operation.

A Bitcoin is currently worth around £40,000 (Picture: EPA)

‘As well as the dishonesty involved, the way Singh approached both premises left wires dangerously exposed, which put people at risk of serious harm.’

Investigators had to calculate the value of the electricity he had obtained illegally and establish that he was responsible for tampering with the power supply in a ‘painstaking’ prosecution, Mr Baxter added.

He said: ‘We showed the court the level of planning involved to divert the power supply away from the meters, including directing two employees to do the practical work.’


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