Four robbers in balaclavas forced entry into the house, before tying up the man’s wife and threatening him at gunpoint to hand over an unknown amount of Bitcoin, each of which is now worth more than £8,000.
The victim lives in the village of Moulesford in Oxfordshire, where episodes of Midsomer Murders have been filmed.
Police were called at around 9.40am on Monday. Local children were kept inside a nearby school, while police attended the scene and began their investigation.
A local resident described the victim of the attack as “well-known” and suggested that the village community had been left dazed by the news.
“Everyone is shocked, I think,” he told The Telegraph.
“We think we live in a safer space, and then this happens and everyone gets scared.”
Bitcoin is a digital currency that allows users to trade anonymously and securely across the internet without regulation or a central bank.
In the last 12 months, Bitcoin‘s value has risen by more than 1,000 per cent. It hit an all-time high on December 17, when one was worth more than £13,500.
Mark Shone, chief executive of Explain The Market, told The Mail on Sunday: “These are criminals who have likely caught on to the current popularity of Bitcoin.
“But depending on how much they have, these coins are like being in possession of a rare painting. Trying to exchange large amounts for normal money without alerting suspicion will be very difficult.”
A police spokesman said: “Thames Valley Police is investigating an aggravated burglary which occurred at a property in Moulsford on Monday.
“Officers were called at about 9.40am to a report that offenders had entered a residential property off Reading Road and threatened the occupants. No one was seriously injured during the incident.