South Korean authorities have stepped up efforts to track down and arrest Shin Hyun-Seong, also known as Daniel Shin, following the arrest of Terraform Labs co-founder Do Kwon.
Kwon was arrested in Montenegro while trying to board a plane using fake documents. Shin is now in the crosshairs of South Korean authorities, who are accusing him of earning some $105 million in profits from illegal sales of LUNA tokens prior to Terra’s collapse.
Daniel Shin claims no knowledge of Do Kwon’s wrongdoing
Shin co-founded Terra in 2018, along with Do Kwon. The company’s main goal was to create a decentralized stablecoin that could be used in everyday transactions.
The Terra stablecoin was launched in 2019 and quickly gained popularity, with the project attracting significant investment from major venture capital firms such as Coinbase Ventures and Pantera Capital.
However, Terra’s success was short-lived and the project collapsed in 2022. South Korean authorities launched an investigation into Terra, accusing the company of engaging in illegal activities such as market manipulation and insider trading.
The investigation also revealed that Shin allegedly made significant profits from the sale of LUNA tokens, which were used to finance Terra’s development.
Shin denied any wrongdoing and said he had no knowledge of the illegal activities carried out by Do Kwon.
However, South Korean authorities have remained steadfast in their search for Shin and his arrest is now considered imminent.
“I left (Terraform Labs) two years before the collapse of Earth and Moon, and I had nothing to do with the collapse,”
stated Do Kwon’s former colleague.
Do Kwon’s situation in Montenegro and Serbia
According to reports in DL News, a few weeks before Interpol issued the arrest order, Do Kwon reportedly opened a new company in Serbia.
This news seems to confirm that the Terra Luna leader, once considered a cryptocurrency prodigy and unrestricted billionaire, spent an extended period of time in Serbia before becoming a fugitive following the collapse of UST and $LUNA.
Kwon has been investigated and searched by several jurisdictions, and now Montenegro will have the burden and honor of prosecuting him first. However, it appears that the trial is related only to the use of false documents at the Pogdorica airport, and does not involve the well-known events that led to the collapse of Terra Luna.
It is difficult to determine whether Do Kwon was trying to create a new life for himself in Serbia. However, it is nonetheless a fact that Kwon opened a company in his own name just days before Interpol issued the arrest order.
This situation could pose a challenge for the Serbian authorities, who, according to some, should have better checked Kwon’s background and criminal package before allowing him to open the company, even in the absence of an arrest order from Interpol.
Montenegro will be the first country to put Do Kwon on trial, but it appears it has no plans to initiate extradition until Kwon answers to charges of using false documents to try to board at Podgorica airport.
Even though the trial will take place in Korean, the fact that Kwon opened a company in Serbia may raise some questions about the responsibilities of Serbian authorities. However, those hoping to recover their lost funds from the collapse of cryptocurrencies issued by Terraform Labs are likely to be disappointed even if Kwon is jailed.