Where in the world is Terraform Labs villain Do Kwon? Montenegro, actually
Probably in a jail cell, waiting to be extradited stateside
The US Justice Department charged fugitive crypto bro Do Kwon with fraud on Thursday, just hours after Montenegro's minister of interior announced he had been detained by local authorities.
According to a tweet by minister Filip Adzic, Kwon was "deprived of his liberties" at the capital city Podgorica's airport after being found with forged documents.
Kwon and another South Korean national were reportedly headed for Dubai on fake Costa Rican passports prior to being detained on forgery charges. There was no record of their entry into Montenegro.
The duo were also allegedly carrying falsified Belgian passports, three laptops and five mobile phones. Kwon's South Korean passport was cancelled in October.
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Korean media has reported Kwon's detained companion is Terraform's chief financial officer, Han Chang Joon, aka Han Mo. Both are wanted in South Korea as well as internationally, through an Interpol Red Notice.
Their identities were reportedly confirmed through fingerprinting and the Seoul Southern District Prosecutors Office is working to extradite Kwon.
The fugitive was spotted in Serbia last December after leaving his former home base of Singapore in September.
Until mid-December, the crypto bro was a prolific Twitter user, and upon the news breaking that he had left Singapore declared via the microblogging network that he was "not 'on the run' or anything similar." He also pledged "full cooperation" to "any government agency that has shown interest to communicate."
Forged passports from multiple countries tend to suggest otherwise.
US federal prosecutors have reportedly said they would seek his extradition.
The eight-count indictment alleges Kwon deceived investors of his company Terraform Labs and engaged in market manipulation. The Korean fugitive allegedly convinced a US trading firm to alter the market price of TerraUSD and agreed to modify a loan between the firm and the company in compensation.
The $40 billion collapse of Terraform Labs' supposed "stablecoin" TerraUSD and similar Luna tokens is often cited as the first domino to topple in a long sequence of crypto-related frauds and stuff-ups that became known as "crypto winter."
A crash was said to be impossible, as the stablecoin's value was pegged to the US dollar. That turned out to be as true as Kwon's tweets. ®