• South Korean regulators have launched an investigation into Bithumb, a cryptocurrency exchange based in the country.
• The investigation is being carried out by the Seoul Regional Tax Service and is looking into the possibility of tax evasion.
• The investigation comes after former Bitchumb Chair Lee Jung-Hoon was acquitted of fraud charges, and the death of an executive at the largest shareholder of Bithumb.
The South Korean National Tax Service (NTS) has launched an investigation into Bithumb, a cryptocurrency exchange based in South Korea. The NTS is looking into the possibility of tax evasion by examining the domestic and international transactions of Bithumb Korea, Bithumb Holdings and its affiliates. The investigation is being carried out by the 4th Bureau of Investigation of the Seoul Regional Tax Service, which specializes in “special tax investigations” rather than standard ones.
This news comes shortly after the acquittal of former Bitchumb Chair Lee Jung-Hoon of fraud charges, as well as the death of Park Mo, an executive at the largest shareholder of Bithumb. Park was under investigation by local authorities for embezzlement and stock price manipulation.
In 2018, Bithumb was also previously under a special tax investigation by the NTS, resulting in the exchange reportedly winning roughly $64 million in income tax. This is the latest in a series of unfortunate events for the exchange, following the deaths of other crypto billionaires such as MakerDAO co-founder Nikolai Mushegian and venture capitalist Feng Bo in the last month.
As the South Korean government ramps up its regulations on the cryptocurrency industry, the NTS’ investigation into Bithumb is yet another example of the government’s efforts to ensure the integrity of the crypto sector. With the investigation still ongoing, it remains to be seen what the outcome will be for the exchange.