Montenegro top court sends Do Kwon extradition case back to lower court, justice minister

Montenegro top court sends Do Kwon extradition case back to lower court, justice minister
Do Kwon's extradition case proceeds.
  • Do Kwon case sent back to lower court.
  • Crypto vote courted in South Korea elections.
  • Paraguay considers temporary crypto-mining ban.

Top court sends Do Kwon extradition case back for review

In the latest twist of a months-long Do Kwon legal saga, Montenegro’s Supreme Court on Friday overturned a decision to extradite the Terraform Labs co-founder to his native South Korea, the Associated Press reported.

South Korea and the US have both requested Kwon’s extradition and have received favourable decisions from different Montenegro courts, but the earlier rulings were overturned and the case returned to a lower court for review.

Still, the Supreme Court said that a final decision in an extradition case with multiple requests should come from Montenegro’s justice minister, according to the report.

Kwon faces fraud charges in South Korea and the US related to the Terra Luna collapse, which wiped out about $60 billion of market value in 2022, DL News has reported.

About a year ago, Kwon was apprehended on the tarmac of Podgorica Airport in Montenegro in a private jet, attempting to travel to Dubai on a forged Costa Rican passport, DL News reported at the time.

Kwon was found guilty of attempting to travel with falsified documents and served a term in a Montenegro prison. He was released last month, though local authorities kept his passport so he cannot leave the country. He now awaits further deliberations on his extradition.

In a related development, a federal court jury in New York also on Friday found Kwon and Terraform Labs liable on civil fraud charges of misleading investors before the Terra Luna collapse, Reuters reported.

The US Securities and Exchange Commission had accused Kwon and his company of misleading investors about the risk associated with their stablecoin.

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District Judge Jed Rakoff will consider penalties, the report said.

South Korean political parties vie for crypto votes

Crypto has emerged as a campaign issue in South Korea’s April 10 parliamentary elections, with the two major political parties looking to win votes in a country where more than 10% of the population was involved with registered crypto exchanges in the first half of 2023, Bloomberg reported.

The opposition Democratic Party said it would ease restrictions on ETFs, including US Bitcoin products. “We’re going to allow the ETFs, whether domestic or overseas,” Democratic Party policy specialist Hwanseok Choi was cited as saying.

For its part, President Yoon Suk Yeol’s People Power Party promised to delay the imposition of a tax on crypto.

Paraguay considers temporary crypto-mining ban

Paraguayan lawmakers have proposed legislation to curb energy-intensive crypto mining, CoinMarketCap reported.

The bill would temporarily prohibit “the creation, conservation, storage and commercialisation of virtual assets or crypto assets, cryptocurrencies and the installation of cryptomining farms in Paraguayan territory,” according to a Google translation of the Spanish-language text.

Rising temperatures have increased power demand and pushed Paraguay’s grid to its limits, the report said.

Crypto market movers

  • Bitcoin is up 0.38% today at $68,114.90.
  • Ethereum is up 0.94% today at $3,350.39.

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