Korea Confiscates Bitcoin Worth $1.4 Million in Child-Porn Cybercrime Case

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Seoul, South Korea—The South Korean government moves to confiscate 191 bitcoins from a child-porn cybercrime case where the perpetrator is now sentenced to jail and slapped with a $640,000 fine.

According to Yonhap News Agency, the move comes after the Wednesday ruling of the South Korean Supreme Court that cryptocurrencies can be considered property with value that can be forfeited in criminal cases.

As of this writing, the confiscated bitcoins are worth over $1.4 million, based on CoinDesk’s Bitcoin Price Index.

The Supreme Court order supports a previous ruling from a previous ruling from an appeal, which reversed the decision by a lower court to scrap a prosecutor’s appeal to forfeit the criminal’s cryptocurrency assets.

According to Yonhap, the lower court rejected the appeal due to the argument that cryptocurrencies “only exist electronically and have no physical form.” However, the appeals court later decided that cryptocurrencies can be considered as “profit earned from trade in goods.”

However, it remains unclear as to how the South Korean government would handle the forfeiture of digital assets. Regardless, this decision marks the first in the string of ongoing criminal cases in the country involving cryptocurrencies.

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