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TN Man Indicted For Romney Blackmail Attempt: Wanted $1M In Bitcoins 92

Posted by timothy
from the ok-ok-one-hundred-beeeeeeelion-in-bitcoin dept.
OakDragon writes "A Franklin, Tennessee man has been indicted for his attempt to blackmail Mitt Romney. Michael Mancil Brown allegedly claimed his intent to release some of Romney's pre-2010 tax documents unless one million dollars was converted to Bitcoins and deposited into an account which he specified. Demand letters were sent to Republican and Democratic Party offices in Tennessee, and Pricewaterhouse Coopers (whom he claimed to have stolen the documents from). Pricewaterhouse Coopers denies that he ever obtained such documents. Brown was also attempting to "sell" the documents to others (presumably the Democrats or other interested parties) for the same amount. And yes, he was apparently well aware of the Dr. Evil reference."
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TN Man Indicted For Romney Blackmail Attempt: Wanted $1M In Bitcoins

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  • by mcmonkey (96054) on Thursday June 27, 2013 @03:54PM (#44125543) Homepage

    It's not like he was asking for anything of value in return.

    • by Anonymous Coward
      Yes. Just because I'm asking for 1 million pounds of dog shit, that doesn't make my threat to release evidence of some embarrassing thing you did if you don't give me that 1 million pounds of dog shit any less blackmail.

      A better question would have been "why waste a perfectly good blackmail on something as worthless as bitcoins?".
      • why waste a perfectly good blackmail on something as worthless as bitcoins?

        Lack of tracability (... or so he thought...)

  • by Anonymous Coward

    "Man charged for accepting bitcoins"

    because all he does is trying to open-source romney tax return

  • re: the write-up (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward

    Despite the efforts of Republican pollsters to make the whole country speak in a way that focus groups showed was mildly favorable to their interests, there is no such entity as the "Democrat Party."

    • by timothy (36799) Works for Slashdot

      You're right.

      Corrected now; that was a slip-up, should have caught it in the original submission.

      timothy

  • starting the insanity defense early
  • by Sparticus789 (2625955) on Thursday June 27, 2013 @04:09PM (#44125751) Journal

    Look, these tax returns are unique, kinda neat. But if I buy them, they are gonna sit on a shelf for 6 months. I have to find just the right buyer. And even then, I am not sure I can get $1 million for them. I'll give you 50 bucks.

  • Who the hell is he?

    • by Anonymous Coward

      A liar, a tax evader, a politician who changes his views every time it's convenient, a cheat, a guy with a HUGE sense of entitlement. Someone who enjoys screwing everyone else over, and then blames it on them.

      Someone who appeals to Republicans.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by khallow (566160)
        And if you had changed that last sentence to "appeals to Democrats", you'd have Obama. I guess that's why some people are upset over the two party system in US politics.
  • by MatthewNewberg (519685) on Thursday June 27, 2013 @04:15PM (#44125803) Homepage
    $1 Mil in Bitcoins is the total daily volume of MtGrox. I am thinking it might take some work to get that many bitcoins in short order.
  • $1M worth of BTC bought back on Sept 2, 2012 would be valued over $10M today and closer to $25M during the peak a few months ago. What blackmail!

  • He would have gotten away with it too if it weren't for that meddling printer. Such a perfect plan.

  • by cold fjord (826450) on Thursday June 27, 2013 @04:33PM (#44126039)

    Another example of why both law enforcement and regulators will have increasing interest in Bitcoin as it becomes more heavily used.

    • by rtb61 (674572)

      Crazy notion. Why bother with junk bitcoins, when you can open an anonymous account in some off shore tax haven and have them transfer their money from their off shore tax haven account ie they can't report you without shooting themselves in their tax returns. Same with kidnapping the right wing rich and greedy with tax cheating off shore tax haven bank accounts, accounts hidden, transfers can never be reported and again can't say anything without shooting themselves in their tax returns. Criminals are ver

  • Why does anyone consider Mitt Romney's 2010 worth anything at all, and what in the bleeding blue hell is so bad on these that it's considered ransom-able?
    • He refused to release it. Therefore he must have had something to hide. The political costs of not releasing were obvious. Therefore he decided releasing it would be even worse.

      • So let me get this straight Impy the Impiuos Imp, are you implying that the implications of this might implicitly implicate his imperfect tax record instead of the impeccable impersonation of an honest business man? Sorry man I couldn't resist.
  • Bitcoin provides anonymity. Unfortunately like most computer security mechanisms, the weak link is the human being using them.

    Even if this guy had the alleged information, and wasn't stupid enough to get caught, it makes no sense for Romney to pay him. If Romney paid the guy $1M in bitcoins, there is nothing stopping him from also selling the info to the democrats or a newspaper immediately afterwards for another $1M. It's not like you can sue the guy for breach of contract.

    • by Nyder (754090)

      Bitcoin provides anonymity. Unfortunately like most computer security mechanisms, the weak link is the human being using them.

      Even if this guy had the alleged information, and wasn't stupid enough to get caught, it makes no sense for Romney to pay him. If Romney paid the guy $1M in bitcoins, there is nothing stopping him from also selling the info to the democrats or a newspaper immediately afterwards for another $1M. It's not like you can sue the guy for breach of contract.

      Omg, you discovered the problem with blackmailing people. Too bad no one else ever thought of that!

      • Well I see you've discovered how to be an asshole...

No amount of careful planning will ever replace dumb luck.

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