Before extradition, Terraform Labs founder Do Kwon will first have to stand trial in Montenegro for traveling on a fake passport, according to his lawyer in the country. The fugitive crypto entrepreneur may also have to serve time in prison before he is extradited from the Balkan nation, its justice minister indicated.
Alleged South Korean Crypto Fraudster Do Kwon Stays in the Balkans for Now, Officials Say
Kwon Do-Hyung, the CEO of the company behind crashed stablecoin terrausd and cryptocurrency luna who is better known as Do Kwon, will face trial in Montenegro. He was arrested there on March 23 while trying to leave for Dubai using a false Costa Rican passport.
Terraform Labs co-founder’s trial for using forged personal documents “must be completed first” before he can be extradited to other countries, his Montenegrin lawyer Vojislav Zečević told South Korea’s Yonhap news agency on Tuesday.
Authorities in both South Korea and the United States are seeking Kwon’s extradition. However, the prosecutor investigating the case was quoted as saying on Monday that the process is likely to take some time as judicial authorities in Montenegro intend to indict him.
Zečević now added that he intends to appeal the court order extending Kwon’s pre-trial detention. The Korean was initially arrested for 72 hours but a local court extended the measure to 30 days, citing the flight risk and the need to verify his identity.
Kwon’s lawyer claims the said passport was legitimate but according to a Bloomberg report, a forged Belgian passport was also found in his luggage. Meanwhile, Montenegro’s Interior Minister Filip Adžić revealed that investigators also found three laptops and five mobile phones belonging to Kwon that carried a lot of “very interesting” information.
In another report, Bloomberg quoted Montenegro’s Justice Minister Marko Kovač who said that a judge will decide if Do Kwon will be extradited to the U.S. or South Korea. He also emphasized that Kwon may first have to serve time in the small European nation if convicted of traveling on fake documents.
“Consideration will be given to the gravity of crimes, the location of committed offenses, the sequence of requests, as well as the citizenship” of the suspects, Kovač elaborated on Wednesday. Kwon was arrested together with another man who has since been identified as Terraform’s Chief Financial Officer, Han Chang-joon.
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Arrest, co-founder, collapse, Crypto, Cryptocurrencies, Cryptocurrency, detention, do kwon, extradition, founder, korea, Kwon, LUNA, Montenegrin, Montenegro, South Korea, Stablecoin, Terraform, terraform labs, TerraUSD, Trial, U.S., US
To where do you think Montenegro will eventually extradite Do Kwon? Tell us in the comments section below.
Lubomir Tassev is a journalist from tech-savvy Eastern Europe who likes Hitchens’s quote: “Being a writer is what I am, rather than what I do.” Besides crypto, blockchain and fintech, international politics and economics are two other sources of inspiration.
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