Illegal Crypto Mining Operation Found Hidden Under School Floor

Photo: Police Cohasset

A man has been arrested and is facing charges in a small town outside of Boston after local authorities discovered an “illegal cryptocurrency mining operation” that was hidden under the floor of a school.

As the BBC reportwas the suspect, 39-year-old Nadeam Nahas, formerly assistant facilities manager of the small town of Cohasset, who about 10 miles outside of Boston. In December 2021, a “routine inspection” of the school revealed some suspicious changes.

Cohasset police chief William Quigley told the BBC that, according to Cohasset High School’s own facilities director, “during a routine inspection of the school he noticed electrical wires, temporary conduits and numerous computers that seemed out of place”.

The pipes and wiring all ran to the same spot, “near the school’s boiler room,” and a look was taken under the floor for “a cryptocurrency mining operation illegally connected to the school’s electrical system.”

Image for article titled Illegal Crypto Mining Operation Found Hidden Under High School

Photo: Police Cohasset

As you can see in the image above provided by the local police, this was admittedly not a warehouse-sized operation – a total of 11 computers were discovered, including some ‘inside coolers’ venting to the outside – but that was still a considerable amount of hardware hidden under the floors of a school. And it drew more than enough current to leave a trail.

Authorities say the mine rig operated from April to December 2021 and racked up the school’s electric bill, estimated at about $17,500. Nahas, who pleaded not guilty in court last week, resigned as assistant facilities director shortly after the discovery of the operation. He was arrested last year after a months-long investigation involving not only local law enforcement, but also the U.S. Coast Guard and Department of Homeland Security.

The Boston Globe saying that Nahas’ specific charge is vandalizing a school and fraudulent use of electricity, and that he has been “ordered to stay away from all public buildings in Cohassett”.


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