Terra Founder Do Kwon Cleared for Extradition to South Korea: Report – Decrypt

A judge has ruled that Terra founder Do Kwon can be extradited to his native South Korea upon serving his jail sentence at Spuž prison near Podgorica, according to local media.

Montenegro’s High Court announced the news to local publication Pobjeda, following the Court of Appeals’ decision to reject a request to extradite him to the U.S.

Since his arrest and sentencing in Montenegro on charges of using a forged passport, Do Kwon has been at the centre of a jurisdictional tug-of-war between the U.S. and South Korea.

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Both countries seek his extradition to face charges relating to the collapse of Terra’s crypto ecosystem in 2022, which contributed to a bear market during which many crypto projects with exposure to Terra declared bankruptcy.

Do Kwon faces charges including violating capital markets rules in both countries, which could put him behind bars for over four decades, according to a member of South Korea’s financial crime investigation bureau.

Montenegro’s Court of Appeals concluded that the High Court’s decision to extradite Do Kwon to the U.S. was annulled due to the order in which the U.S. and South Korea filed petitions. In fact, his extradition to the U.S. has now twice been approved by a lower court and then called back by the appeals court.

The U.S. Embassy in Montenegro initially requested that Do Kwon be temporarily detained, with its request for extradition arriving after that of South Korea’s Ministry of Justice.

It marks the second time that a court in Montenegro has revoked Do Kwon’s extradition; in February the appellate court found that the original decision to extradite Kwon was “affected by significant violations,” and marred by “incomprehensible” wording.

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As well as a federal criminal trial in New York, Kwon faces a lawsuit from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) that’s set to begin later this month—with or without his presence.

Edited by Stacy Elliott.

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