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Bitcoin heist in Home Counties village Moulsford

Armed robbers broke into a house in wealthy village of Moulsford, Oxfordshire
At gunpoint, they for..

  • Armed robbers broke into a house in wealthy village of Moulsford, Oxfordshire
  • At gunpoint, they forced trader to transfer a fortune of Bitcoin over to them
  • Four thugs in balaclavas took part in what is the first Bitcoin heist in the UK

By Jonathan Bucks For The Mail On Sunday

Published: 22:01 GMT, 27 January 2018 | Updated: 22:01 GMT, 27 January 2018

Armed robbers broke into a house in a wealthy Home Counties village and forced a cyber-currency trader to transfer a fortune in Bitcoin to them on his computer.

The heist – believed to be the first of its kind in Britain – comes as the virtual currency has soared in value to just under £8,000 for a single coin.

Four thugs in balaclavas broke into the house. They tied up the man’s wife and put the couple’s baby outside in a pram, before threatening him with a gun and forcing him to transfer his Bitcoin into their control.

The village of Moulsford, Oxfordshire (pictured) was the scene for the UK's first armed Bitcoin heist after four armed robbers threatened a cyber-currency trader

The village of Moulsford, Oxfordshire (pictured) was the scene for the UK's first armed Bitcoin heist after four armed robbers threatened a cyber-currency trader

The target of the robbery on Monday morning was a trader in the Oxfordshire village of Moulsford, where several episodes of Midsomer Murders have been filmed.

Bitcoin is favoured by criminals because it cannot be tracked by government officials, making it extremely difficult to track down the raiders.

It exists only in cyberspace and can be exchanged anonymously at the click of a mouse and then exchanged for normal money.

Horrified staff and children were locked inside a nearby independent school, Cranford House, as police deployed a helicopter to track the suspects while detectives quizzed locals and trawled through their bins for clues.

Cranford House headmaster Dr James Raymond emailed parents with Thames Valley Police’s appeal for witnesses – specifically for dashcam footage and anyone who saw four men acting suspiciously in the village.

A mother on the school run told The Mail on Sunday: ‘I saw four young men in black tracksuits with the hoods pulled up, crossing the road to the property where it took place.’

She added: ‘They were aged 18 to 25, dark-skinned and super-fit. They jumped over the fence on the other side of the road. I didn’t see any gun, but that’s what people locally are saying – and that the men wore balaclavas which I didn’t see either, just the hoodies pulled up.

The heist comes as the virtual currency Bitcoin has soared in value to just under £8,000 for a single coinThe heist comes as the virtual currency Bitcoin has soared in value to just under £8,000 for a single coin

The heist comes as the virtual currency Bitcoin has soared in value to just under £8,000 for a single coin

‘It was a strange time for them to choose because there are always so many parents coming and going directly opposite.

‘I’d be amazed if more people didn’t see them.’

Another Moulsford resident said: ‘The village is in a real state of shock right now. For something like this to happen here is terrifying. It’s a very quiet place and, although there is a lot of money round here, a digital currency heist is the last thing anyone would expect – particularly during the school run.’

Last night, a Thames Valley Police spokesman confirmed an ‘aggravated burglary’ took place in Moulsford and said they believed the property was targeted.

Crypto-currency experts said the growing attention around Bitcoin could encourage other criminals to use similar tactics.

Mark Shone, chief executive of Explain The Market, said: ‘These are criminals who have likely caught on to the current popularity of Bitcoin.

‘But depending on how much they have, these coins are like being in possession of a rare painting. Trying to exchange large amounts for normal money without alerting suspicion will be very difficult.’

The police spokesman said: ‘Officers were called at about 9.40am to a report that offenders had entered a residential property off Reading Road and threatened the occupants. No one was seriously injured during the incident.

‘Officers are particularly interested in speaking to anyone travelling through the village on the A329 Reading Road between 7.30am and 10.30am on Monday who has dashcam footage, or anyone with mobile-phone footage.

‘People in the local community may notice an increased presence of officers in the area while our inquiries are ongoing. The investigation is in its early stages, however initial inquiries suggest this may be a targeted incident.

‘No arrests have been made at this stage and anyone with any information relating to the incident is asked to call Thames Valley Police on the non-emergency number 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.’

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Australia

Great Southern sets development pathway for Mon Ami gold operation

Great Southern Mining Ltd (ASX:GSN) has set a development pathway for gold operations at Mon Ami in Western Australia after completing an in-house preliminary economic evaluation of the potential for an open-pit development.

Results are sufficiently positive for the company to initiate the full suite of requisite preliminary activities targeted at obtaining a mining approval under the Mining Act 1978 (WA) in 2021.

This progression towards development is expected to add significant underlying value to Mon Ami and the company’s gold strategy.

Development of the deposit offers a potential source of cash flow for ongoing funding of aggressive exploration plans across the gold portfolio – including Cox’s Find, at depth at Mon Ami and the Edinburgh Park Gold Project in North Queensland.

Testing high-grade extensions
Great Southern Mining chief executive officer Sean Gregory said: “We are pleased to announce that our in-house preliminary economic review has identified a potential low-cost..

Great Southern Mining Ltd (ASX:GSN) has set a development pathway for gold operations at Mon Ami in Western Australia after completing an in-house preliminary economic evaluation of the potential for an open-pit development.

Results are sufficiently positive for the company to initiate the full suite of requisite preliminary activities targeted at obtaining a mining approval under the Mining Act 1978 (WA) in 2021.

This progression towards development is expected to add significant underlying value to Mon Ami and the company’s gold strategy.

Development of the deposit offers a potential source of cash flow for ongoing funding of aggressive exploration plans across the gold portfolio – including Cox’s Find, at depth at Mon Ami and the Edinburgh Park Gold Project in North Queensland.

Testing high-grade extensions

Great Southern Mining chief executive officer Sean Gregory said: “We are pleased to announce that our in-house preliminary economic review has identified a potential low-cost development pathway for an open-pit mining operation at Mon Ami.

“The planned drilling program seeks to expand on this opportunity and test for higher grade extensions to the deposit at depth.

“Rapid development at Mon Ami has the potential to deliver a robust source of cash flow for GSN, allowing the further acceleration of the aggressive exploration plans across our Australian gold portfolio.”

Near-surface high-grade gold hits

Recent drill results at Mon Ami included several near-surface high-grade results – 11 metres at 7.9 g/t gold from 26 metres including 4 metres at 15.9 g/t and 4 metres at 12.4 g/t from 80 metres.

Initial technical studies have been scoped at the project to support a mining approval and include a review of the existing drill core and optical televiewer data by the company’s geotechnical consultants to recommend pit design parameters.

GSN believes that the high grades could extend to depth in an analogous fashion to the Ida H deposit 14 kilometres to the north of Mon Ami along the same regional shear zone, the Barnicoat Shear.

Upcoming drilling

The metallurgical characteristics of Mon Ami were tested in 2018 where the recoveries averaged 95% in the fresh and transitional rock, which will be the focus of any open pit development.

The maiden inferred resource of 1.1 million tonnes at 1.7 g/t for 59,000 ounces was estimated in 2018 and since then 2,073 metres of reverse circulation (RC) drilling has been conducted with further drilling is planned.

As a part of upcoming drilling, GSN plans to upgrade the resource to the indicated status based on an improved understanding of the deposit from the quality assured drilling and improved confidence around modifying factors.

Drill rig secured

The company has secured the services of its preferred RC drilling contractor to resume drilling operations at Laverton from the first week of December 2020.

Drilling will test these targets at Mon Ami as well as the targets at Cox’s Find.

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Australia

Tempest Minerals in trading halt with capital raising news pending

Tempest Minerals Ltd (ASX:TEM) (FRA:LIF) has a capital raising announcement pending and has been granted a trading halt by the ASX.

The halt will remain in place until the earlier of the start of normal trading on Tuesday, November 17, 2020, or when an announcement is released to the market.

Securities last traded at 3.8 cents and since the market close on August 28 have traded in the range of 2.4 cents to 5.3 cents.

Drilling underway
The company is active at the Yalgoo projects around 400 kilometres north of Perth in WA with drilling of three priority targets beginning last month at the Warriedar West Prospect.

Tempest considers Yalgoo the forgotten goldfield, with world-class deposits every 10 kilometres, including high-grade gold, copper, zinc, tungsten and iron, and major infrastructure in place which represents a low-cost, high-impact exploration opportunity.

The drilling at Warriedar West is targeting intrusion-related gold system (IRGS) mineralisation.

Gold and trace eleme..

Tempest Minerals Ltd (ASX:TEM) (FRA:LIF) has a capital raising announcement pending and has been granted a trading halt by the ASX.

The halt will remain in place until the earlier of the start of normal trading on Tuesday, November 17, 2020, or when an announcement is released to the market.

Securities last traded at 3.8 cents and since the market close on August 28 have traded in the range of 2.4 cents to 5.3 cents.

Drilling underway

The company is active at the Yalgoo projects around 400 kilometres north of Perth in WA with drilling of three priority targets beginning last month at the Warriedar West Prospect.

Tempest considers Yalgoo the forgotten goldfield, with world-class deposits every 10 kilometres, including high-grade gold, copper, zinc, tungsten and iron, and major infrastructure in place which represents a low-cost, high-impact exploration opportunity.

The drilling at Warriedar West is targeting intrusion-related gold system (IRGS) mineralisation.

Gold and trace element anomalies typical of IRG-style mineralisation are present in the project and it includes considerable nugget-rich free gold exploited in modern times by prospectors as well as high-grade gold in rock chips.

Tempest is also undertaking surface sampling and drill planning at other projects within its portfolio.

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Australia

S&P/ASX 200 dips 0.40% as new COVID-19 cases in the US top 150,000 for the first time

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) fell 26 points or 0.4% to 6,393 by around 1.40 pm as COVID-19 cases in the northern hemisphere continue to surge, leading to further lockdowns.

Despite today’s losses, the index is still on track for a weekly gain of about 3.2% after rising 4.4% last week.

Financials, energy and industrials were leading the declines today while materials and communications advanced.

Energy stocks were also underperforming but they are still up by 13% this week.

COVID-19 update
The number of new COVID-19 cases in the US topped 150,000 on Thursday, eight days after 100,000 cases were found in a day for the first time, according to a New York Times report.

Deaths are rising too with more than 1,000 on average each day and COVID-19 hospitalisations set a record on Thursday, climbing to 67,096.

The pandemic has risen to crisis levels in much of the nation, especially the Midwest, as hospitals warn of dwindling bed space and as coroners deploy mobile morgues.

Top gainers
Tod..

S&P/ASX 200 (INDEXASX:XJO) fell 26 points or 0.4% to 6,393 by around 1.40 pm as COVID-19 cases in the northern hemisphere continue to surge, leading to further lockdowns.

Despite today’s losses, the index is still on track for a weekly gain of about 3.2% after rising 4.4% last week.

Financials, energy and industrials were leading the declines today while materials and communications advanced.

Energy stocks were also underperforming but they are still up by 13% this week.

COVID-19 update

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the US topped 150,000 on Thursday, eight days after 100,000 cases were found in a day for the first time, according to a New York Times report.

Deaths are rising too with more than 1,000 on average each day and COVID-19 hospitalisations set a record on Thursday, climbing to 67,096.

The pandemic has risen to crisis levels in much of the nation, especially the Midwest, as hospitals warn of dwindling bed space and as coroners deploy mobile morgues.

Top gainers

Today’s top gainers on the ASX include FYI Resources Ltd (ASX:FYI) (+13.89%), Euro Manganese Inc CDI (ASX:EMN) (+17.31%), Rimfire Pacific Mining N L (ASX:RIM) (+20.00%), Technology Metals Australia Ltd (ASX:TMT) (+10.00%), Andromeda Metals Ltd (ASX:AND) (+15.38%), Auteco Minerals Ltd (ASX:AUT) (+10.00%), Macarthur Minerals Ord Shs (ASX:MIO) (+10.64%) and Nanoveu Ltd (ASX:NVU) (+15.00%).

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