Massachusetts police recently identified the man allegedly responsible for running an unlawful crypto mining operation located under a school crawl space.
39-year-old Nadeam Nahas, the former assistant facilities director for the town of Cohasset, was charged with fraudulent use of electricity and vandalizing a school after a three-month-long investigation.
According to the Norfolk District Attorney’s Office, after Nahas failed to show up to an arraignment on February 23, a judge issued a default warrant and rejected the defense’s motion to reschedule.
The arrest warrant was later canceled and Nahas pleaded not guilty to the pair of misdemeanor charges. He is due back in court for a pretrial hearing on May 17.
The illegal operation was uncovered in December 2021 when police responded to a call from the Cohasset facilities director.
The director said he found electrical wires, temporary duct work and numerous computers in an “elevated crawl space” near the school’s boiler room during a routine inspection of Cohasset Middle/High School.
Cohasset Police Department Chief William Quigley said he then contacted the town’s IT director, who determined the set up was an illegal cryptocurrency mining operation utilizing the school’s electricity system.
According to court records, the mining operation cost the school around $17,500.
The equipment was later safely removed and examined by the Coast Guard Investigative Service and the Department of Homeland Security.
Cryptocurrency mining refers to the process of validating cryptocurrency transactions and creating new cryptocurrency, which requires a large amount of electricity.
Nahas was eventually identified as a suspect in the subsequent investigation due to his Twitter posts about crypto, as well as Home Depot purchases on his debit card for “Coleman 48-qt. coolers, insulated flex ducts, extreme weather foil, insulation sleeves and a water-based sealant tub,” all of which were items located in the crawl space.
He resigned from his position in early 2022, and was ordered to stay away from all public buildings in the town.