Crypto

Arrest warrant for Terra Do Kwon founder cannot be found

On Sunday morning, the founder of the Terra blockchain indicated that he was not on the run, without specifying where he was.

Do Kwon, the South Korean founder of blockchain Terra, who faces an arrest warrant, denied on Sunday that he was on the run after Singapore police said he was not in the city-state.

On Sunday morning, he tweeted, “I’m not ‘on the run’ or anything,” but did not disclose his whereabouts.

Do Kwon, co-founder of terra usd (ust) stablecoin, lost $40 billion to investors and more than $500 billion in the crypto market this year after his stablecoin crashed. The collapse led a South Korean court to issue a warrant for his arrest on Wednesday.

“For any agency that has shown an interest in communicating, we are fully cooperating and have nothing to hide,” he tweeted.

“We are in the process of defending ourselves in several jurisdictions (…) and look forward to uncovering the truth in the coming months.”

Prior to the release of the Singapore police statement, many believed the 31-year-old suspect was in the city-state, where he gave his first media interview in August since the cryptocurrency operator went bankrupt in May, in which he admitted he was wrong.

“Do Kwon is not currently in Singapore”

On Saturday, the Singapore Police Force (SPF) said via email in response to an inquiry from AFP that “Do Kwon is not currently in Singapore.”

“SPF will assist the Korea National Police Agency (KNPA) within the framework of our national legislation and our international obligations,” the brief statement said without further details.

Singapore’s Straits Times reported that Do Kwon’s Singapore work permit expires on December 7th. According to these media outlets, he apparently applied for an extension of this permit, but the procedure would have been rendered impossible due to the revocation of his passport by Seoul.

In April 2022, Terra’s value reached its highest level. It was then the fourth largest stablecoin and the tenth leading cryptocurrency by market value, according to CoinMarketCap.

But in May, the stablecoin ust lost more than half its value in 24 hours, setting off a wave of panic in an already hectic crypto asset market. Very quickly, the stablecoin and its sister token, Luna, dropped to zero, resulting in over $500 billion in losses in the market and hurting the savings of many small investors. Since then, South Korean authorities have launched several criminal investigations into the case.

Pauline Armande with AFP

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