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Authorities in South Korea have reportedly seized assets worth billions of won belonging to former representatives of Terraform Labs. The measure should prevent suspects in the case with the failed blockchain firm from selling property that may have been obtained with criminal proceeds.
South Korean Law Enforcement Moves to Seize Terraform-Linked Real Estate, Report
Prosecutors in South Korea have so far established control over 210 billion won (nearly $160 million) in assets owned by employees and executives of Terraform Labs, the company behind the collapsed cryptocurrency luna and stablecoin terrausd, the national broadcaster KBS reported.
The property, mostly real estate, has been seized by the financial and securities crime joint investigation team of the Seoul Southern District Prosecutor’s Office. The move aims to prevent eight people from disposing of the assets that authorities suspect may have been acquired using undue profits.
Among them is Terraform Labs co-founder Shin Hyun-seung, also known as Daniel Shin, who has been accused of unfairly earning some 140 billion won by buying luna before it was officially issued and selling it at peak price afterwards, while failing to inform investors about the risks associated with the coin.
Shin also allegedly used customer information and funds of a fintech firm he later found, Chai Corp., to promote luna. He now faces multiple charges of fraud and violations of capital markets and financial laws in South Korea.
In November, last year, prosecutors seized Shin’s home in a neighborhood of the South Korean capital, and have since frozen about 100 billion won worth of his property. Despite the charges, a Seoul court rejected their second request for his pre-trial detention last week.
South Korean investigators claim Shin made a total of over 154 billion won in gains while working with Terra. They intend to also track down his hidden assets and seize them. The unfair profits of the seven other employees allegedly amount to 169 billion won, 114 billion of which have been “collected and preserved,” the KBS report detailed.
Shin and others are accused of masterminding the Terra business in a way that allowed them to acquire pre-issued luna that they sold when the price increased after launch. Terraform’s other co-founder, Do Kwon (Kwon Do-Hyung) was arrested in Montenegro in March along with Han Chang-joon, the company’s chief financial officer.
Kwon is likely to stand trial in the small Balkan nation for attempting to leave for Dubai on a forged Costa Rican passport, before he is handed over to either South Korea or the United States to face other charges. Both nations are seeking his extradition.
Do you expect South Korean authorities to eventually confiscate the assets of the Terraform Labs former employees? Share your thoughts on the subject in the comments section below.