Wanted crypto founder Do Kwon says ‘not on the run’
SINGAPORE: Do Kwon, the wanted South Korean founder of failed cryptocurrency Terra, denied on Sunday that he was on the run after Singapore police said he was not in the city-state as believed. .
Kwon’s whereabouts came into question following the statement from the Singapore Police Force (SPF) on Saturday night, and his tweets did not reveal his whereabouts.
The collapse of Terraform Labs earlier this year wiped out around $40 billion in investor money.
A South Korean court on Wednesday issued an arrest warrant for Kwon.
Early on Sunday, he said on Twitter, “I’m ‘not on the run’ or anything like that,” but didn’t reveal his whereabouts.
“For any agency that has shown interest in communicating, we are in full cooperation and we have nothing to hide,” he added.
“We are defending ourselves in multiple jurisdictions…and we look forward to clarifying the truth in the coming months.”
The 31-year-old was previously thought to be in Singapore, where last month he gave his first media interview since the crypto operator shut down in May.
Late Saturday, the SPF said in an email response to an AFP query that “Do Kwon is not currently in Singapore.”
“The SPF will assist the Korean National Police Agency (KNPA) within the framework of our national legislation and our international obligations,” the brief statement said, which did not give further details.
The Singaporean newspaper Straits Times reported that Kwon’s work permit in the city-state was due to expire on December 7, but his application for renewal may now be in jeopardy.
South Korean prosecutors have also issued arrest warrants for five other people – who have not been named – linked to stablecoin TerraUSD and its sister token Luna.
Kwon’s Terra/Luna system disintegrated in May, with the price of both tokens dropping to near zero and the fallout hitting the broader crypto market. Its collapse caused more than $500 billion in losses.
Stablecoins are designed to have a relatively stable price and are usually pegged to a real-world commodity or currency.
TerraUSD, however, was algorithmic – using a code to keep its price around one US dollar.
Many investors lost their life savings when Luna and Terra entered a death spiral, and South Korean authorities opened several criminal investigations into the accident.