Nonprofit Organization Raided For Unauthorized Trading Of Bitcoins in Michigan
Chris Boden, president of the National Science Institute which was originally named “The Geek Group” took to YouTube to discuss that they have recently been raided by the for “unauthorized trading of bitcoin.”
The group has been around since 1994 but on December 21 2018 saw the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Homeland Security Agency raid its offices and seize computers, hard drives, and other equipment. The Geek Group sought to provide an opportunity for all people through programs designed to foster lifelong education, vocational access, and creativity in technology.
They maintain a robust youtube presence, serving as an extension of their digital education program. As of 2018, The Geek Group had over 94,000 subscribers and 650 videos. In addition to technical tool training videos, The Geek Group regularly produces several educational video series.
On December 21, 2018, numerous federal and local law enforcement entities executed a search warrant at the organization's headquarters in Grand Rapids, MI. The search warrant remains under seal by court order, however, law enforcement told news reporters the search warrant is a part of an ongoing criminal investigation. Michigan State Police, IRS, Department of Homeland Security and Grand Rapids Police were on scene.
On December 31 the group announced that it was closing down: “As of Noon today, 31 December 2018 the collection of weirdos that began as The Bohemian Brothers, that evolved into the group called GeNext!, that began the company called The Geek Group, and eventually The National Science Institute will formally shut down operations to the public” and the institute “was a labor of love but it could not generate enough funding to pay its bills”
Boden said that the raid took place “because he was commercially trading in cryptocurrency without the proper authorization“, and that he expected to go to prison. On Sunday, January 6 he stated that on the advice of his lawyer he would make no further comment. He even posted on Facebook saying:
“On the advice of legal counsel I will not comment further on the Government’s ongoing investigation.”
There have been no official statements from the feds about this raid.