Seoul, South Korea –Top executives from two of South Korea’s biggest cryptocurrency exchanges were held for suspected embezzlement and fraud as the government puts pressure on one of the world’s busiest crypto markets.
According to prosecutors, Kim Ik-hwan, Coinnest’s Chief Executive, had been detained. Coinnest is South Korea’s fifth largest largest cryptocurrency exchange.
While other detained executives were not named, one is presumed to be the head of Coinnest’s rival exchange. Prosecutors are still deciding whether or not they will issue arrest warrants for those suspected of stealing client’s assets. They also plan to investigate other virtual exchanges for possible offenses.
South Korea is home to the third largest cryptocurrency market in the world, but authorities have taken measures against what they call “illegal unfair movements in trading” following last year’s bitcoin frenzy. The clampdown caused trading volumes to drop by 5% of last year’s peak.
Photo by Donald Tong