The French sent far-right groups Bitcoin before suicide
A French computer programmer reportedly sent $ 522,000 in bitcoin to far-right American activists before dying by suicide last month.
Laurent Bachelier – a Paris-based developer who advocated right-wing beliefs online – made the payments on December 8, the day before he published a blog post that revealed he had committed suicide after years of chronic pain, The Wall Street Journal reported Monday.
“I care about what happens after I die,” wrote Bachelier, 35, according to a copy of the post published by Chainalysis, a bitcoin analytics firm. “That’s why I’ve decided to leave my modest wealth to specific causes and people.”
The recipient of Bachelier’s greatest gift was Nick Fuentes, an online right-wing influencer who was at the U.S. Capitol on the day it was inundated by Trump supporters, according to the Journal.
Fuentes was reportedly seen outside the Capitol when the January 6 riot took place, but has said he was out of the building.
Bachelier sent Fuentes 13.5 bitcoin, which at the time of transfer was valued at about $ 250,000, Chainalysis found. The cryptocurrency has more than doubled since then, with Fuentes being valued at more than $ 500,000 on Monday.
Bachelier also gave 1 bitcoin each – currently valued at around $ 37,000 – to VDARE, an anti-immigration website; the Daily Stormer, a neo-Nazi forum; and Gab.com, a social media platform popular with the far right, Chainalysis said in a report last week.
Chainalysis did not name Bachelier in its report, but the journal said it confirmed his identity through online records and interviews.
The FBI has been informed of Bachelier’s payments as it is investigating whether far-right groups have received funding from foreign sources, according to the Journal.
Bachelier helped develop Weboob, a set of digital tools that remove information from the Internet without using a web browser. Weboob is one of the software projects listed in Bachelier’s profile on GitHub, a platform where developers share code.
In his last blog post, Bachelier said he suffered from health problems for about eight years, including trigeminal neuralgia, a chronic condition that causes facial pain. He also lamented the “decline of Western civilization” and appeared to criticize the coronavirus lockdown and protests against the Black Lives Matter last year.
Bachelier’s brother, Fabien Bachelier, confirmed to the Journal that his brother had died of suicide and said the family was grieving.
“We don’t understand. We’re just learning something,” Fabien told the newspaper.