Prosecutors Arrest Bitsonic Executives for Fraud

South Korean authorities have reportedly sentenced the CEO of local exchange Bitsonic to seven years in prison.

The authorities also handed out a one-year sentence to the technology chief of Bitsonic for stealing customer deposits valued at 10 billion won ($7.5 million).

Bitsonic CEO Sentenced to 7 Years for $7.5 Million Theft

Local reports claim that the Seoul District Court charged Jinwook Shin with fraud and forging records. Judge Lee Jong-chae claimed that Bitsonic fraudulently boosted trading volumes to mislead users and rob them of their deposits. 

The crime involved using Bitsonic’s capital to boost the prices of its native coin, Bitsonic Coin (BSC). In addition, authorities claim the fraudulent scheme spanned from January 2019 to May 2021.

Additionally, the court claimed fake cash deposits were made into Bitsonic to create a false sense of legitimacy. Authorities said Shin coordinated a manipulation of the market by taking advantage of the reputation of the exchange.

More About Bitsonic’s Fraud

Furthermore, the court noted that both Bitsonic’s vice presidents of technology—addressed only as Mr. A and Shin showed no remorse, adding that trust in crypto exchanges “has been greatly damaged.”

Shin reportedly claimed to have falsely announced that Bitsonic had partnered with foreign exchange to promote a sense of trust among investors. However, the fraudulent scheme collapsed after investors were unable to withdraw their funds.

Bitsonic shut down in 2021, citing “internal and external issues.” In addition, South Korean authorities claim some investors have yet to recover their funds from the exchange.

South Korea Continues its Push for Transparency

South Korean lawmakers have taken a hard stance against crypto fraud, particularly targeting exchanges and other digital financial service providers. Seoul Prosecutors recently arrested the CEO and some executives of the crypto investment platform Haru Invest. 

Prosecutors claim the group robbed 16,000 customers of 1.1 trillion won ($830 million) in cryptocurrency, with the majority of the proceeds being misappropriated through reinvestment between March 2020 and June 2023.

As more people continue to embrace crypto, users need to heavily vet the platforms they commit their funds to.


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