Maltese Crypto Miner Takes Hardware Retailer to Court and Wins

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Malta is better known as the blockchain island in the crypto world, and thanks to its plethora of crypto and blockchain-friendly laws it’s clear why. These news laws are now proving to be incredibly useful, especially when miners are having issues with their hardware. One Maltese crypto miner bought crypto mining hardware from Dario Azzopardi – CEO 3 Group – and claims it’s incredibly loud and uses a lot of electricity, so much so that the rig runs at a deficit.

Azzopardi Playing the Local Laws Incredibly Well

The crypto miner took his claim to a Consumer Claims Tribunal, where he laid out his case against Azzopardi. True to form for companies in the wrong, Azzopardi failed to turn up to any of the hearings, resulting in an automatic win for the miner. Azzopardi was issued with a notice to pay the miner €2,600 – a notice that can only be enforced with an executive warrant from the central courts of Malta, not the Consumer Claims Tribunal. Even then, if Azzopardi closes his personal and company bank accounts in Malta, the miner will never get his money back – something that happens all too often in Malta. For now, the miner will have to make do with a public warning against Dario Azzopardi from 3 Group.

Not Azzopardi’s First Brush with the Law

Unfortunately it appears as if Maltese consumers are still learning that Azzopardi is a serial scammer. Back in 2017, Azzopardi charged a woman 60 for the installation of Windows 10 – an operating that was completely free at the time. Similarly to the Bitcoin mining rig incident, Azzopardi was issued with a notice to refund the woman 60. In what appears to be a flagrant disregard for the law, Azzopardi failed to comply with the Consumer Claims Tribunal notice and never paid the woman what was legally owed to her. Unfortunately for consumers, retailers like Azzopardi know that these small value claims can be ignored with not ramifications from the law.

Is Mining from Home A Good Idea?

As it stands, it looks as if this crypto miner was relatively new to the industry and had done little to no research on the subject whatsoever. The Bitcoin network hashrate is climbing to new all-time highs every week, meaning the chances of being profitable with one ASIC rig is very slim. Even some of the biggest Bitcoin mining companies that have top of the range setups and access to the cheapest electricity on the planet are mining Bitcoin at a cost of around $2,500. The days of being able to mine Bitcoin from your own home and remain profitable are long gone – unless you mine outside in a cardboard box, that is…

Is Mining in Malta Possible?

There are a number of rigs that are profitable in Malta, including the Antminer S9. At an average cost of €0.15/kWh and the current network hashrate, an S9 will churn out a profit of around €4.52 a day, or €1,628.98 a year. That being said, that figure is prone to fluctuation based on the network hashrate, the number of occupants listed as living in the property and the price of Bitcoin. This still raises questions over the quality of the hardware that Azzopardi has been selling to Maltese consumers. 

Bitcoin miners all around the globe are looking to take advantage of free electricity in order to mine profitably, meaning this miner never stood a chance of mining profitably in Malta. The mining rig was likely mis-sold to the miner, but in Azzopardi’s defense, the miner should have done his homework before buying a crypto mining rig rather than believing everything Azzopardi told him.