Aug 7, 2023

Ilya Lichtenstein, husband of Heather "Razzlekhan" Morgan, admitted that he was the hacker behind the multi-million-dollar exploit of crypto exchange Bitfinex in 2016, according to a report from CNBC.

Video transcript

The world's greatest rapper Rasel Khan's husband, Ilia Dutch Liechtenstein admitted during a court appearance last week that he was the hacker behind the multimillion now multibillion dollar exploit of Bit Fin in 2016. According to a report from C NBC, joining us now to discuss is Coindesk global policy and regulation. Managing editor Nick Day, who is my moon and stars as Rasul Khan would say, uh he is the editor of Coin de State of crypto newsletter which uh which by all means like it's as good as a Raza Khan lyric. OK. All right, good morning, Nick. Happy Monday. Good morning. How did the greatest couple since Harry and Megan uh plead in this hearing? Yeah. So this was a hearing last week where uh Ilia Liechtenstein, otherwise known as Dutch and Eder Morgan, otherwise known as Razan. Uh both pled guilty to conspiracy to defraud the US and money laundering charges tied to the 2016 hack. But you know, as you said, you're in um you know, it was really the fact that Liechtenstein said that he was indeed the next hacker that I think really, uh I mean, I was surprised, I didn't really expect that they, uh, based on what we've heard, it sounded like they just happened to, you know, come in possession of the crypto that was stolen. But, uh, according to, uh Liechtenstein during the hearing, he said that, uh, he had, uh, you know, according to D AJ, quote, used a number of advanced hacking tools and techniques to uh gain access to bit systems. And again, this is back in 2016, this is, you know, what, several years ago now. So not a recent event, but uh basically he was able to uh enact more than 2000 transactions, stealing, ultimately just under 100 and 20,000 Bitcoin, uh which he then apparently sat on for quite a while. Yeah, and, and, and the fact that he sat on and, and I think the only thing they spent anything was like $500 gift cards at Walmart, uh which was maybe one of the kind of the sweetest things I've ever heard. Um But like, do, do we get a sense of what the motive was here? I mean, other than financing Rasel Khan's last album which really was underfunded, seems like motive enough. Yeah, unfortunately, due to some other events happening at the courthouse that day, we weren't really able to get inside to, you know, listen to the hearing uh itself. But yeah, based on reporting from there. Um No, why not? It's, it's a great album. They, they honestly buy it, it's, it's hysterical, I think she's, she's one of the, you know, they're, if they're brilliant enough to hack, I ain't clearly, they're brilliant. She was brilliant enough to, to do this thing. This is, this is clear. I mean, like, just to be clear, Morgan I think is only accused of and pled guilty to money laundering and conspiracy. She wasn't implicated in the hack itself. Uh, that seems to have just been listed sign at least based on what happened at the hearing last week. Me, all right, Nick and lastly, you know, it's been seven years since we learned about the nix. Uh hack. What's response been to the plea and what could happen next? Um So, uh, you know, first off, they say they work with Doj and they're happy that resolution. Uh This is something that came up when they were first arrested, right? The question is who does the crypto belong to? And bit naturally is saying it's them, I believe there were some bit customers at the time who believed the crypto should be theirs because that was, you know, their funds but did create a token at the time of the hack or just after the hack to basically repay his customers. And so, uh I think right now what we're waiting on to see is, you know, if the DOJ A uh decides to release the Bitcoin anytime soon and be, how do you choose to do? So? Most likely they will probably send it back to Bit Forex, uh, or, you know, have someone from bit next, take ownership of the private keys and all that. But, uh, I don't have a timeline for that yet and I think we're probably not gonna see any immediate action, but that's my current expectation for what we'll end up seeing. You think, you think they'll end up getting a job at tether. No. Yeah, I, I like it but, you know, we'll see. We'll have to wait and see. All right, Nick, thanks for joining the show and Happy Monday. That was Coindesk global policy and regulation. Managing editor Nick Day. Don't forget to sign up for the state of crypto newsletter on Coindesk dot com.

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