Welsh man fights council for right to let robot dogs find tossed $175 million in Bitcoin

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As someone from Newport, Wales, there are few local stories as infamous as that of James Howells and his Bitcoin. A Welsh man who threw away a hard drive full of Bitcoin, Howells has tried to find his thrown hard drive for years.

Nine years after throwing away his hard drive, Howells is still attempting to recover his lost millions. His latest plan: hiring a fleet of robot dogs to find his hard drive for him.

Welsh man uses robot dogs to find Bitcoin

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Howells’ latest master plan involves spending millions to make millions. The Welsh man plans to spend $11 million to dig up the landfill holding his cryptocurrency and using AI-powered robotics to find his original hard drive.

The plan involves a pair of Boston Dynamics robot dogs called Spot. In the past, Spot robots have been used for firefighting, geological surveys and more important services. Now, they’re being used to scour through trash to find a single hard drive.

Howells’ expensive plan has been backed by Swiss and German venture capitalists, Hanspeter Jaberg and Karl Wendeborn. If the costly plan succeeds, the two will make $50 million from the venture. However, the plan still needs one important thing: council approval.

James Howells has yet to gain approval of the Newport City Council, a major blow to his plan. The council has warned that digging up nine years of landfill poses “significant ecological risk” to the city. If he does get permission of the council, he’ll be able to dig up the huge landfill. If he doesn’t, no crypto for him.

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Crypto for everyone?

Howells has expressed a desire to share his Bitcoin findings if it is discovered. Alongside $50 million to his investors, the Welsh man aims to split his remaining money between a large number of hands. Well, at least 151,485 pairs of them.

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The Welsh man has claimed that he will take 30% of his Bitcoin. After that, another 30% will be shared between the workers who recover virtual currency. Finally, each resident of Newport will be given $60 of Bitcoin or, at the time of writing, 0.000047BTC.

Nevertheless, investors know that Howells’ plan — as technologically advanced as it is — is not a sure-fire success. Speaking to Insider, Hanspeter Jaberg said: “It’s obviously a needle in the haystack, and it’s a very, very high-risk investment.”

If they don’t find the $175 million in cryptocurrency, at least Howells will still be known as the man who threw away millions.