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Where is Do Kwon? 4,400 members of the UST Restitution Group (URG) want to know

By Daniela Ešnerová

13:51, 20 October 2022

The word ‘Wanted’ appears in red letters
The most wanted person in crypto may be hiding in a Dubai, according to some investors – Photo: Shutterstock

More than 4,400 investors, who lost their money in the Terra network collapse earlier this year, are joining forces in their efforts to try to track down crypto’s most-wanted person – the network’s founder Do Kwon – as a law enforcement manhunt has still to bear fruit.

In May, the Terra network collapsed, sending the whole crypto market into a deep downward spiral, wiping out $40bn (£35bn) of investors’ money.

At the time, the network was hosting two of the 10 biggest cryptocurrencies – the stablecoin terrausd (UST) and the crypto terra luna (LUNA). Both of these have been subsequently rebranded to USTC and LUNC while a new Terra blockchain was established for the new terra 2.0 (LUNA) crypto.

Luna 2 (LUNA) to US Dollar

Do Kwon, the founder and CEO of Terraform Labs which was responsible for the Terra network, is now wanted by South Korean prosecutors.

In addition, the international police organisation Interpol has issued a ‘red notice’ following a request from a court in South Korea in September. The court alleged that Kwon and other members of Terraform Labs violated the South Korea’s capital markets law.

As the entrepreneur’s location remains unknown, a group of Terra investors, the UST Restitution Group (URG), formed on Discord where members have been discussing the entrepreneur’s possible whereabouts.

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‘I’m not hiding’

The 31-year-old South Korean national appears to have been evading law enforcement this whole time - all while being active on social media and giving interviews. 

BTC/USD

64,468.90 Price
-2.890% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 106.00

ETH/USD

3,150.42 Price
-1.920% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0616%
Short position overnight fee 0.0137%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 6.00

DOGE/USD

0.15 Price
-5.460% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.0012872

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0.53 Price
-4.450% 1D Chg, %
Long position overnight fee -0.0753%
Short position overnight fee 0.0069%
Overnight fee time 21:00 (UTC)
Spread 0.01168

“I’m writing code in my living room,” Kwon wrote on 26 September 2022. “I’m making zero effort to hide. I go on walks and malls, no way none of [crypto Twitter] CT hasn’t run to me in the past couple weeks.”

Then again this week, Kwon insisted that he isn’t on the run and described the charges from South Korean prosecutors against him as “politically motivated” during the crypto podcast Unchained. He said: 

“We are a little bit disappointed in the way that prosecutors are attempting to create new regulation through criminal court proceedings, whereas that should be within the job description of the legislature, or at the very least the financial regulators.”

URG spurred on to seek Kwon

These statements may have provoked members of the URG further to take action and follow clues on the entrepreneur’s location.

The crypto-friendly city of Dubai has been tipped to be Kwon’s most probable current location by URG members.

“Finding him could be easier than thought. I want to recruit other people to join the search. There’s a 50-50 chance of getting him in Dubai,” investor and member of the group Kang Hyung-suk told the Financial Times

Other URG members have also said that Kwon could be in Russia, Azerbaijan, Seychelles or Mauritius.

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The main difference between CFD trading and trading assets, such as commodities and stocks, is that you don’t own the underlying asset when you trade on a CFD.
You can still benefit if the market moves in your favour, or make a loss if it moves against you. However, with traditional trading you enter a contract to exchange the legal ownership of the individual shares or the commodities for money, and you own this until you sell it again.
CFDs are leveraged products, which means that you only need to deposit a percentage of the full value of the CFD trade in order to open a position. But with traditional trading, you buy the assets for the full amount. In the UK, there is no stamp duty on CFD trading, but there is when you buy stocks, for example.
CFDs attract overnight costs to hold the trades (unless you use 1-1 leverage), which makes them more suited to short-term trading opportunities. Stocks and commodities are more normally bought and held for longer. You might also pay a broker commission or fees when buying and selling assets direct and you’d need somewhere to store them safely.
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