Malaysian police hit on a novel way to dispose of more than 1,000 bitcoin-mining machines seized in raids -- they crushed the devices using a steamroller.

Malaysian police in Borneo destroy seized bitcoin-mining machines Malaysian police in Borneo destroy seized bitcoin-mining machines Photo: Courtesy of Dennis Wong / Dennis Wong

Authorities on Borneo island discovered the machines, worth an estimated 5.3 million ringgit ($1.25 million), in crackdowns between February and April.

Cryptocurrency mining is common in Malaysia Cryptocurrency mining is common in Malaysia Photo: Courtesy of Dennis Wong / Dennis Wong

Eight people were arrested for allegedly stealing the equivalent of $2 million worth of electricity to power the energy-hungry computers, according to police.

Crypto-mining requires vast amounts of energy and processing power Crypto-mining requires vast amounts of energy and processing power Photo: Courtesy of Dennis Wong / Dennis Wong

"The crypto-miners stole electricity," said Hakemal Hawari, a senior police official in the city of Miri, where the devices were seized.

"Their actions are dangerous for life and property, as they can cause power outages."

Malaysian police have hit on a novel way to dispose of more than 1,000 bitcoin-mining machines seized in raids -- crushing the devices using a steamroller. Malaysian police have hit on a novel way to dispose of more than 1,000 bitcoin-mining machines seized in raids -- crushing the devices using a steamroller. Photo: DENNIS WONG

The 1,069 mining machines were laid out in a car park of a police station in Miri last week and crushed with a steamroller.

Six of those arrested were convicted of stealing electricity, jailed for six months and fined.

Crypto-mining -- the process by which computers mint new virtual currency and validate transactions -- requires vast amounts of energy and processing power.

The process typically involves large numbers of sophisticated computers that form a specially designed "rig" that runs the complex calculations required to maintain a cryptocurrency network.