New York Man Pleads Guilty to $1.8 Million Ether Robbery

Louis Meza admitted to kidnapping and stealing $1.8 million in ether as part of a plea deal. He may be sentenced to 10 years in prison as a result.

AccessTimeIconSep 6, 2018 at 7:45 p.m. UTC
Updated Sep 13, 2021 at 8:21 a.m. UTC

A New York man has pleaded guilty to kidnapping and robbery charges in connection with the theft of $1.8 million worth of ether.

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus Vance said in a statement published on Wednesday that Louis Meza, who was accused of kidnapping an unnamed individual in New York last year and stealing their ether holdings, admitted to grand larceny in the first degree and kidnapping in the second degree.

Meza was arrested in December after allegedly forcing the victim to hand over a cell phone, wallet and keys at gunpoint last November, as previously reported by CoinDesk.

Vance said in the statement:

"Meza orchestrated a 21st-century stick-up. Then 21st-century investigators brought him swiftly to justice, securing a landmark conviction in an undeveloped area of the law. Since 2010, my Office's Cybercrime & Identity Theft Bureau has developed the expertise and technology to become a national leader in cybercrime prosecution and prevention, as underlined by this conviction and recovery of funds on the survivor's behalf."

While the Manhattan DA's website states that Meza "is expected to be sentenced on September 27," the Wall Street Journal reported that Meza agreed to a 10-year prison sentence under the terms of his plea deal. A judge will confirm or modify the sentence during a hearing later this month.

Authorities used video surveillance to confirm that Meza entered the victim's home using the stolen keys, before exiting with a box believed to have held the victim's digital wallet.

Meza was originally charged with criminal possession of stolen property, computer tampering, computer trespass and criminal use of a firearm on top of the charges to which he pleaded guilty.

Scales image via Shutterstock

DISCLOSURE

Please note that our privacy policy, terms of use, cookies, and do not sell my personal information has been updated.

The leader in news and information on cryptocurrency, digital assets and the future of money, CoinDesk is a media outlet that strives for the highest journalistic standards and abides by a strict set of editorial policies. CoinDesk is an independent operating subsidiary of Digital Currency Group, which invests in cryptocurrencies and blockchain startups. As part of their compensation, certain CoinDesk employees, including editorial employees, may receive exposure to DCG equity in the form of stock appreciation rights, which vest over a multi-year period. CoinDesk journalists are not allowed to purchase stock outright in DCG.

Trending

1
CoinDesk - Unknown
Animoca Brands Leads $32M Funding Round for Planetarium Labs

The capital will help the Web3 gaming company develop its community-driven network.

CoinDesk - Unknown
2
CoinDesk - Unknown
Solana Labs, Multicoin Accused of Violating Securities Law by SOL Investor

Solana’s SOL token is an unregistered security whose insiders have benefitted while retail suffered, the suit alleged.

CoinDesk - Unknown
3
CoinDesk - Unknown
First Mover Asia: How Inaccurate Data Misled Investors to See Massive Outflows From This Crypto Exchange; BTC Holds Steady Over $20K

KuCoin founder Johnny Lyu said those data feeds plus mislabeled, on-chain wallets propagated rumors last week that led to the token exodus; ether rises in Wednesday trading.

CoinDesk - Unknown
4
CoinDesk - Unknown
Shiba Inu Plans to Launch Stablecoin, Reward Token, Collectible Card Game

SHIB prices hardly budged on the news but gas token BONE and ecosystem token LEASH rallied.

CoinDesk - Unknown