The FBI has been given the go-ahead to liquidate up to $28 million worth of bitcoins seized during the shutdown of the Dark Web marketplace Silk Road.
So, of the 12 million bitcoins in existence, this illegal site has 1.5% of them. Not sure what cut they take of sales, but say it's a tenth - that means that at least 15% of bitcoins are used for criminal reasons.
Compare that 28m to the amount of money in old fashioned (much more untraceable) cash used by organised crime. "2.7 per cent of global GDP"
The bitcoin system is a public ledger. https://blockchain.info/address/1F1tAaz5x1HUXrCNLbtMDqcw6o5GNn4xqX
© Finextra Research 2014