Ireland’s High Court broke new legal ground for crypto

December 20, 2018
Darya Karatkevich

According to a recent ruling by Irish High Court, the crypto proceeds of approximately 25,000 euros held by a convicted prisoner are “proceeds of crime” and therefore also have to be confiscated.


A man, Neil Mannion, was jailed back in 2015 after he admitted to selling drugs in darknet, including the infamous Silk Road and Agora websites. The Irish Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB) withdrew his Bitcoin (BTC) revenues along with his fiat funds during the proceedings in 2016. Mannion’s crypto funds were stored in his crypto wallet in Ethereum (ETC), and since back then it wasn’t trading as a digital currency, it was not considered an asset.

Mannion tried to challenge the basis under which his computer was accessed after the investigation was completed. However, Ms Justice Carmel Steward dismissed his arguments and ruled that his constitutional rights were not breached.

“A great deal of the State’s investigation into this matter was potentially undermined by the intricacies of data privacy rights and cryptocurrency exchanges,” she also added.

The media called this case as the one “breaking new legal ground.” After the ruling, those who find themselves in a similar position to Mannion might expect the same outcome as this ruling will be related. Being a part of a common-law system, Irish courts observe and are bound by precedents in higher courts.

Post written by Darya Karatkevich
Darya is a blockchain market observer with 5+ years of experience as an author and editor for major tech blogging platforms. Her fortes are blockchain technologies and solutions, cryptocurrencies and crypto-related regulations.

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