Singapore authorities investigate Terraform Labs

Since Do Kwon and Terraform Labs were accused of engaging in fraudulent activity by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) a month ago, the authorities in Singapore have begun an investigation into the firm that Kwon helped build, Terraform Labs. According to the allegations made in the action brought by the SEC, Kwon stole about 10,000 bitcoin from the Terra platform and the Luna Foundation Guard, which he then turned into fiat currency. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) asserts that Kwon has cleaned more than one hundred million dollars’ worth of bitcoins since the original collapse of the site.

An email issued by the Singaporean police on March 6 said that “investigations have began in respect to Terraform Laboratories,” as stated in a report by Bloomberg. In addition, the email said that the investigations are “ongoing,” and that Kwon is not in the city-state at the present time.

Several participants in the cryptocurrency industry have voiced their disapproval of the case on the grounds that it might pave the way for the SEC to target stablecoins in future litigation. The comparisons of assets made by the SEC have even been described as “wild” by lawyers working in the business.

The beginning of this whole affair can be traced back to May 2022, when the stablecoin known as Terra USD (UST) was unpegged from the US dollar. The following demise of the Terra ecosystem was responsible for a huge implosion in the market for digital assets, which resulted in losses of approximately $40 billion.

Authorities in South Korea have also conducted an investigation into Terraform Laboratories, and a warrant has been issued for Kwon’s arrest in that country. In an attempt to identify Kwon, South Korean law enforcement officers headed to Serbia. On February 15, South Korean prosecutors filed a warrant to arrest a local e-commerce executive who they accused of taking Terra (LUNA) in exchange for promoting Terra Labs. The executive was suspected of receiving the payment for marketing Terra Labs.

As at the time this article was written, Kwon has not made any comments. During the whole of the incident, the co-founder of Terraform Labs has been quite active on social media. On the other hand, it is the beginning of February and he has not tweeted since then.


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Data Requested by US DOJ to Supplement Money Laundering Probe on Binance CEO: Report

A new report from Reuters revealed that regulators from the United States Department of Justice (DOJ) had, in late 2020, requested information from Binance as it concerns its internal communications concerning its Anti-Money Laundering (AML) systems.


According to the Reuters report, the request for information specifically sought to probe the role of the exchange’s Chief Executive Officer, Changpeng Zhao, regarding the likely violation of the Bank Secrecy Act. While Reuters said it was not sure how the exchange responded to requests, the regulator’s moves show how well American watchdogs are into crypto trading platforms.

“Regulators across the globe are reaching out to every major crypto exchange to better understand our industry. This is a standard process for any regulated organization, and we work with agencies regularly to address any questions they may have.” Binance Chief Communications Officer Patrick Hillmann said when contacted by Reuters for comment on the regulator’s requests for documents. He added that Binance has “an industry-leading global security and compliance team” with over 500 employees, including former regulators and law enforcement agents.”

Binance and the Reuters Reporting Tussle

Reuters can be tagged as Binance Exchange’s unwelcomed media nemesis as the reputable news agency has published quite a number of damning articles about the trading platform in the past few years.

In April of this year, Reuters alleged that the Russian subsidiary of Binance has a very close tie with the country’s financial regulator, Rosfinmonitoring. The ties alleged in the report involved an agreement by the exchange to share its users’ data with the Russian regulator.

In July, Reuters also alleged that Binance had maintained a weak check-up until mid-2021, a loophole that allowed sanctioned Iranian residents to trade on the exchange. These claims were also compounded by the allegations of fraud that the trading platform had helped, through its weak AML systems, in laundering as much as $2.35 billion worth of cash.

Binance had responded to these allegations as false, and the trading platform claims the media agency is always selective in the data it chooses to publish about the exchange.

Image source: Shutterstock


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Coinbase Facing SEC Probe over Crypto Listing: Sources

Coinbase is facing a new probe as the crypto winter wages on.


Three people familiar with the probe said that the crypto exchange platform is facing a US probe into whether it improperly let Americans trade digital assets that should have been registered as securities.

Bloomberg reported that Coinbase has come under heavy scrutiny from the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) following the platform’s expansion of the number of tokens which is offered to trade.

This case has come at a critical time as Coinbase is still recovering from last week’s allegation of an insider trading scheme where a former company manager and two other people involved were sued by the SEC.

The SEC and Coinbase declined to comment, Bloomberg said.

“As the largest US trading platform, Coinbase lets Americans trade more than 150 tokens. If those products were deemed securities, the firm could need to register as an exchange with the SEC,” Bloomberg reported.

The SEC is necessary to apply for a legal test to check if a digital asset is a security. A token is generally considered to be under the SEC purview if it involves investors kicking in money to fund a company and make a profit.

However, a recent report from Blockchain.News stated that Coinbase’s new derivatives unit is capturing the interest of new retail traders who are eyeing the crypto exchange’s “nano” bitcoin futures products amid the company’s collapsing trading volumes.

Coinbase’s “nano” bitcoin futures product saw volumes touch records three straight days in the last week even after its spot trading volume collapsed from $200 billion in May 2021 to $59 billion in July, the report added.

The nano bitcoin futures product was launched in June. 

Image source: Shutterstock


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