Man In Wales Pleads With Local Council After Accidentally Throwing Out Hard Drive With Access To $287 Million In Bitcoin

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Man In Wales Pleads With Local Council After Accidentally Throwing Out Hard Drive With Access To $287 Million In Bitcoin

A man in Wales has pleaded with his local council in the city of Newport to allow him to excavate a landfill rubbish dump after he accidentally threw out a hard-drive with access to £210 million, roughly $287 million, in Bitcoin. The hard-drive contained an access key with which to enter his Bitcoin wallet.

James Howells, states that he has 7,500 Bitcoins accessible through the hard-drive which he accidentally threw away in 2013. Howells bought the Bitcoin for almost nothing in 2009, but the hard-drive was placed in a drawer after he spilled a drink over his computer. He however, completely forgot about Bitcoin altogether and later threw the hard-drive away by mistake. At the time he threw the hard-drive away, the coins were worth around £4.6 million.

Each Bitcoin is currently valued at around £28,000.

Despite pleas from Howells for permission to excavate the site, the council has forbidden him from doing so. Howells has now even offered the city 25% of his Bitcoin, around £50 million, if they allow him and a team to retrieve the hard-drive. He had previously attempted on several occasions since 2013 to have the council grant him access, previously offering them 10% of the value of his Bitcoins.

He told BBC Radio 5 Live:

"I offered the local authority 10% of the recovered funds in order to give me permission to search on their property and unfortunately they said no at the time. What actually happened after that was the value of bitcoin skyrocketed even further. In 2017 the value of my hard drive was approximately £125m, at which point I made them another offer of 10% and unfortunately that offer was refused as well. I haven't actually made an offer to them today, but I'm willing to increase my offer to them to 25%. On today's valuation that would be £52.5m and I'd like to put that into a Covid relief fund for the citizens of Newport."

Howells says that this would be a situation that benefits him, the council, and the people of Newport, many of whom are struggling financially due to the ongoing pandemic. He also believes that the hard-drive would be easy to find due to the records kept by the local council and that any costs of excavation could be covered by investors.

The council has repeatedly stopped any search of the landfill site due to the environmental damage caused by digging up so much rubbish, they also say there is no guarantee that the hard-drive will be found.

A spokesperson for Newport City Council said in a statement:

"Newport City Council has been contacted a number of times since 2013 about the possibility of retrieving a piece of IT hardware said to contain bitcoins. The first time was several months after Mr Howells first realised the hardware was missing. The council has told Mr Howells on a number of occasions that excavation is not possible under our licencing permit and excavation itself would have a huge environmental impact on the surrounding area. The cost of digging up the landfill, storing and treating the waste could run into millions of pounds - without any guarantee of either finding it or it still being in working order."

It is estimated that as much as $140 billion worth of Bitcoin has been lost as a result of people accidentally losing their access or forgetting they have the coins in the first-place.

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#UnbankYourself #Cryptocurrencies #PassiveIncome

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Thinking Humanity: Man In Wales Pleads With Local Council After Accidentally Throwing Out Hard Drive With Access To $287 Million In Bitcoin
Man In Wales Pleads With Local Council After Accidentally Throwing Out Hard Drive With Access To $287 Million In Bitcoin
A man in Wales has pleaded with his local council in the city of Newport to allow him to excavate a landfill rubbish dump after he accidentally threw
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