USMS awards Coinbase Prime a multi-million dollar contract

The US Marshals Service will use Coinbase Prime to custody and trade crypto

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Mirza Kadic/Shutterstock modified by Blockworks

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The United States Marshals Service picked Coinbase Prime to custody and provide trading services for certain crypto seized by the arm of the Department of Justice. 

According to a blog post, Coinbase Prime will hold large-cap digital assets for the USMS. 

“The USMS conducted a competitive due diligence process that evaluated a range of solutions, ultimately choosing Coinbase due to our strong track record and ability to securely provide institutional-grade crypto services at scale,” the post said.

Per an awards notice from the DOJ on the government’s website for awards management, Coinbase Prime will receive $32.5 million for it. 

The USMS first posted the contract earlier this year. The goal, the site said, was to find a partner that could “streamline” handling crypto for the USMS. 

“The US Marshals Service (USMS) department of Justice (DOJ), on behalf of the Asset Forfeiture Division (AFD) has a requirement for managing and disposing of large quantities of popular cryptocurrency assets, known as Class 1 cryptocurrencies,” the listing said. 

The US government has a history of using Coinbase to sell crypto. Coinbase created a law enforcement program back in 2014, the company said, which points to its “longstanding history” of working with the government. 

“Growing the crypto economy means promoting safe and efficient markets, and these partnerships are critical to our mission,” the blog post continued.

However, the exchange has also been targeted by an arm of the government. The Securities and Exchange Commission filed a suit against Coinbase last summer alleging that it acted as an unregistered broker and exchange while offering and selling unregistered securities

The regulator and the publicly traded company have been locked in a legal battle since last spring after the latter received a Wells notice about the lawsuit (which was then filed in late June.)

Despite the suit, the US government has continued to use Coinbase to offload crypto, including bitcoin, per data from Arkham Intelligence.


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