This article is more than three months old

Do Kwon’s extradition to be reheard after Montenegro court finds ‘significant violation’ of procedures

Do Kwon’s extradition to be reheard after Montenegro court finds ‘significant violation’ of procedures
Do Kwon is being held in a Montenegro prison while judges consider his extradition to the US or South Korea.
  • Appellate court sent the extradition matter back to a lower court for a new hearing.
  • The ruling will delay when the Terra co-founder may face charges in the US or South Korea.
  • Judge said procedural problems need to be sorted out before Kwon's fate can be determined.

Do Kwon’s extradition is going back to square one.

In a decision that will slow down a potential extradition of indicted crypto entrepreneur from Montenegro, an appellate court last week annulled the decision of a lower court and ordered the process to begin again, according to a statement published Tuesday on the court’s website.

The surprise ruling did not challenge the merits of the lower court’s decision in November to extradite Kwon to either the US or South Korea.

Prosecutors in both nations have charged Kwon with fraud in connection with the $60 billion collapse of the Terra blockchain network in May 2022.

Technical issues

Rather, the Court of Appeal of Montenegro said technical problems arose that necessitated a redo. In a statement, it said the lower court judge heard Kwon in relation to South Korea’s request but did not hear from him on the US request.

“The decision was affected by a significant violation of the provisions of the criminal procedure,” said the statement.

The decision muddles an already complicated legal process around the fate of Kwon and an associate, Han Chang-Joon, both of whom are being detained in prison.

The two men were on the run for months from Interpol only to get arrested in March on the tarmac of Podgorica Airport in Montenegro attempting to fly to Dubai with false Costa Rican passports.

Join the community to get our latest stories and updates

US and South Korea want to try Kwon

The Higher Court in Podgorica approved the extradition of Do Kwon in November following requests from the US and South Korea. It appeared to be up to the Minister of Justice to decide to which nation he would be sent to.

This month, Do Kwon’s lawyer submitted an appeal, which postponed the next steps in extradition proceedings.

Goran Rodic, Do Kwon’s lawyer, told DL News earlier this month that his client had accepted he would be extradited. They appealed who gets to decide which nation he would go to — the Minister of Justice or a court.

A representative for the Court of Appeal in Montenegro didn’t reply immediately to DL News’ requests.

Have a tip about crypto cases? Contact the author at