James Howells, an IT worker, lost a hard drive filled with BTC worth $378 million (11,500 Bitcoins). As The Sun reported, James Howells wants to conduct a large-scale search at a landfill in Wales to find lost cryptocurrencies using X-ray scanning devices and AI technology.
The man who lost 11,500 Bitcoins after throwing away the hard drive plans to do a dumpster hunt!
In 2013, 35-year-old James Howells accidentally trashed his hard drive while cleaning his office. He then began planning research to find his hard drive, as Bitcoin was gaining in value. He reached out to engineers, environmentalists, and data recovery experts from around the world to conduct expert research for a year.
James Howells claims his calling plan is backed by a wealthy hedge fund. They will pay the cost as well as finding the experts and high tech to join this journey. Their only condition is that if the lost Bitcoins are found, the lion’s share will be your hedge fund. He made headlines to release a Bitcoin hard drive worth millions. Now he has a new but expensive method to uncover lost wealth. James Howells adds the following to his explanations on the subject:
During the process I made in January, the value of Bitcoin rose and fell. If we could recover the hard drive today it would be worth £275m. We have a system of multiple conveyor belts, X-ray scanning devices, and an AI scanning device to be trained to recognize items of similar size and density to the hard drive.
This IT employee’s Bitcoins may have been lost forever…
Despite offering the council a large sum of money, James Howells said his demands were repeatedly blocked by the council. James Howells plans a landfill search using a $688,850 million scanning device system to search. He also says they will need an extraction tool to clean up any contamination from the search, which could cost $137,770 million. Still, the council doesn’t seem to have much to do with it. James Howells said:
If they advance me, they know there is no risk to the council. All I want is to tell the decision makers about my situation. If they say no again, I’ll say so, but most likely they won’t even do it. I offered them $75 million in January, but right now they’re saying we won’t accept no matter how much money is involved.
Will the council help James Howells find his Bitcoins?
A spokesperson for the Newport City Council said:
Newport City Council has been contacted several times since 2014 about the possibility of acquiring IT hardware that is said to contain Bitcoin. The first was a few months after James Howells noticed the hardware was missing.
As we previously reported, the cost of excavating the landfill, storing and treating the waste can reach millions of pounds, with no guarantees of finding it or being still operational. The council also told James Howells several times that it is not possible to excavate under our license and the excavation itself would have a major environmental impact on the surrounding area. The Council said:
Even if we could grant his request, the question remains who will bear the cost if the hard drive is not found or the data is damaged beyond recovery. Therefore, we have made it clear that we cannot assist him in this matter.
James Howells has studied aerial photographs of the site and believes the hard drive is within 200 square feet and possibly 15 feet deep. However, it seems that the City of Newport will not be able to really help him and therefore James Howells will not be able to get back 11,500 Bitcoins worth approximately $378 million.