The future of an Evansville-based company that produces a "private voluntary barter currency" known as the Liberty Dollar is in question after federal agents raided the facility this week, according to an e-mail sent by its founder.
Federal officials reportedly raided the group's headquarters, located in a strip mall at 225 N. Stockwell Road, early Wednesday morning and seized documents and precious metals.
See Stephen Gordon's blog for the full letter Liberty Dollar chief Bernard von NotHaus supposedly sent out this morning, and for some speculation that the whole email and story might be bogus. Like the Evansville Courier-Press, I have so far gotten no comment from the Indianapolis FBI, and no returned calls from von NotHaus or the U.S. Attorney's office for the Western District of North Carolina. The Courier-Press story does state that they spoke to unnamed Liberty Dollar employees who seemed to verify the raid had indeed occurred.
UPDATE: Thanks to reasoner Jeff Taylor, I've seen a copy of a Nov. 9 seizure warrant on an Asheville, NC, address, not available online, claiming that Liberty Dollars at that address are forefeitable for being connected with money laundering and mail fraud. I have not read the entire 38 page warrant, nor am I 100 percent certain it is connected with the actions in Evansville today, but given that the Indianapolis FBI referred me to the U.S. Attorney in North Carolina, probably so, and that multiple raids were planned or executed re: the liberty dollar.
The warrant explains that the FBI from Aug 2005 to July 2007 were "conducting undercover operations to determine the legality of the American Liberty Dollar currency." The warrant also notes that von NotHaus sold an undercover agent a Liberty Dollar T-shirt, and that the agent observed von NotHaus driving a 1999 Cadillac Deville. It doesn't take a trained federal agent to connect the dots here, I suppose. In other words: What-th-what-th-What?