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South Korea Seizes $47M Worth of Crypto from Tax Evaders

  • Richard Marley
  • June 24, 2021
  • 2 minutes read
  • 121
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South Korean officials have seized $47 million in cryptocurrency from 12,000 individuals accused of tax evasion. 

One of the largest tax seizures of the country has just taken place in the Gyeonggi Province after officials seized cryptocurrencies worth 53 billion Korean won. According to the Financial Times, the confiscation of $47 million in Ethereum, Bitcoin, and other cryptocurrencies was made possible after some months-long investigation. 

Officials are calling the confiscation the largest “cryptocurrency seizure for back taxes in Korean history.”

Gyeonggi is the most populated province in South Korea and includes the country’s capital, Seoul. 

Officials were able to weed out funds from 12,000 tax evaders by using their phone numbers to get to their activities on cryptocurrency exchanges. 

As many cryptocurrency exchanges do not perform identity verification of account holders, the data had to be parsed manually by the investigators. As yet, it is unclear how many exchanges were included in the investigation. 

Suggested Read: Financial Watchdogs in South Korea Add Guidelines for Crypto Transactions

South Korea’s Regulatory Crackdown

South Korean cryptocurrency’s lack of performing KYC identification has been the key driver behind recent regulatory crackdowns in the country.  

Back in March 2020, local exchanges were made liable to stay compliant with anti-money laundering and terrorist financing regulations set out by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF). Cryptocurrency businesses and exchanges are also required to seek approval from the Financial Services Commission (FSC) and the Korea Internet and Security Agency before September 24, 2021

Suggested Read: South Korea to Penalize the Non-Compliant Crypto Companies