Texas Sheriff Seizes Cash From Bitcoin ATM, Tells Operator To 'Go to Hell'

Lux Vending (operating as Bitcoin Depot) is in a court battle against McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara, over the seizure of cash from a Bitcoin BTC/USD ATM.

What Happened: The incident reportedly occurred after an 82-year-old woman was scammed into transferring $15,000 into Bitcoin. 

KWTX reported that the scam began when the victim clicked on a link in an email claiming that her computer had been attacked by ransomware. She was then directed to a fraudster who advised her to withdraw $15,000 in cash and deposit it into the Bitcoin Depot-operated ATM, claiming this would resolve the issue. 

McLennan County Sheriff’s Office, seized cash from the Bitcoin ATM machine and returned it to the woman.

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Why It Matters: Lux Vending notes the encryption of Bitcoin makes it hard to trace and recover funds once sent.

The ATM company reported the seizure by McNamara, arguing that the move contravened the US and Texas constitutions. 

Lux Vending’s attorney alleged in a suit filed in Waco’s 74th State District Court that “the actions taken by the McLennan County Sheriff’s Office (MCSO) are unlawful and violate Bitcoin Depot’s rights.”

According to the ATM operator, the incident has negatively impacted its business, which incurs a loss and loses credibility due to the confiscated funds. However, Sheriff McNamara insists that his team “did everything right” and that Bitcoin Depot’s officials can “go to hell.” 

McLennan County’s district attorney has reportedly declared the issue “moot “since the sheriff no longer holds the funds.

Bitcoin Depot did not respond to Benzinga’s request to comment at the time of publishing.

Price Action: At the time of writing, BTC was trading at $25,548.57, up 2% in the last 24 hours, according to Benzinga Pro.

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