Former Chair of Bithumb Exchange Acquitted in $70M Fraud Case

  • The issue has been going on since October of last year.
  • Bithumb’s biggest shareholder CEO Park Mo was discovered dead on Dec 30th.

On January 3, 2023, the 34th Division of the Criminal Agreement of the Seoul Central District Court acquitted Lee Jung-hoon, the former head of the South Korean cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb. During his trial, Jung-hoon faced charges of fraud under the Act on the Aggravated Punishment of Specific Economic Crimes.

The issue has been going on since October of last year, when Kim Byung-gun, chairman of the cosmetic surgery business BK Group, claimed that the previous chairman had scammed him out of 100 billion won ($70 million) during purchase talks for Bithumb.

No Longer Engaged in Day-to-day Business

If found guilty, Jung-hoon could have been imprisoned for 8 years. It was reported in the local news that Bithumb’s official reaction to the judgement was to express respect for the court’s decision. That company is now run by “professional managers” and that the previous chairman is no longer engaged in day-to-day business was also made clear in the conversation.

After receiving charges of theft and stock price manipulation, Bithumb’s biggest shareholder Park Mo was discovered dead on December 30th, about a week before the judgement.

These events followed a verdict handed out by a Singaporean court in August 2022, which found Byung-gun guilty of selling BXA tokens without the permission of Jung-hoon. The court verdict required him to pay back the Singaporean company BTHMB all of the money he made from selling BXA.

Later that same month in 2022, in the midst of the turbulence in the Terra ecosystem, Jung-hoon used his mental illness as an excuse for missing a parliamentary session. Following Terra Luna’s demise, South Korean police conducted a number of raids on local businesses, including Bithumb.

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Content writer by profession. A crypto lover and has passion for writing. Follows the developments of digital currency right from its launch, years ago.