Do Kwon could serve prison in both US and South Korea, prosecutor says
South Korean prosecutor Dan Sunghan argues that extraditing Kwon to South Korea is the more logical choice, although he acknowledges that the Terraform Labs co-founder may also face legal consequences in the United States.
Currently, Kwon is under house bail in Montenegro, granted after a bail proposal was approved by a local court on June 5. Both Kwon and Han Chang-Joon, the chief financial officer of Terraform Labs, are required to reside at Chang-Joon's legal residence in Montenegro until a decision regarding extradition is made.
In an interview with Bloomberg, Dan Sunghan stated that extraditing Kwon to South Korea would be more effective "in terms of achieving justice and recovering damages for the victims." Sunghan emphasized that most of the preliminary investigation into the collapse of the Terra ecosystem was conducted in South Korea, and local authorities have access to a greater amount of evidence compared to their American counterparts.
"The most efficient way to ensure justice is to conduct the investigation and trial in South Korea," Sunghan added.
Sunghan also highlighted the fact that South Korean authorities have already indicted several individuals who were allegedly involved in Kwon's scheme.
However, when asked about the possibility of Kwon facing trials in both the U.S. and South Korea, Sunghan acknowledged that such a scenario is a possibility. He explained that if Kwon has yet to be prosecuted for certain crimes in one jurisdiction, he could be subject to multiple cross-border sentences.
Therefore, Sunghan stated that if South Korean authorities fail to account for all the charges Kwon faces in the U.S., it is conceivable that after serving his sentence in South Korea, Kwon could potentially be sent to the U.S. for prosecution. This could result in a total sentence exceeding 40 years.
The prosecutor anticipates that Kwon's sentence in South Korea will be "the longest sentence ever handed down in South Korea." Notably, Kwon's cold wallet, which allegedly holds 10,000 Bitcoin, remains untraceable.
Sunghan confirmed that authorities can observe funds being moved from the wallet in question. However, the wallet's location and the method used to withdraw the funds remain a mystery.
"This is the largest financial fraud or financial securities fraud case that has ever occurred in South Korea," Sunghan declared.
Kwon was detained by Montenegro authorities on March 23 when he attempted to leave the country using counterfeit documents. Subsequently, both U.S. and South Korean authorities requested his extradition. According to prosecutor Dan Sunghan, extradition requests can take up to nine months to process.
Meanwhile, South Korean authorities have initiated a review of Binance's acquisition deals within the country following the legal dispute between the cryptocurrency exchange and the United States Securities and Exchange Commission.
A local report suggests that South Korea's financial watchdog, the Financial Service Committee (FSC), is examining Binance's acquisition of the local crypto trading platform Gopax.
In its review of the Gopax deal, the FSC highlighted Binance's alleged violations of securities laws and the SEC's request to freeze Binance.US assets, making it challenging to accept the acquisition request at this stage.