Saturday, June 3, 2023

Montenegrin Minister of Justice: US and South Korea requested the extradition of Do Kwon, co-founder of Earth

Authorities in the United States and South Korea have moved to have Earth Co-founder Do Kwon extradited to their respective countries following his arrest in Montenegro.

In a press conference on March 29, Montenegrin Justice Minister Marko Kovač stated that the United States had made diplomatic efforts to get Kwon’s hand when South Korean authorities requested his extradition. Kovač announced after Kwon’s detention at Podgorica airport in Montenegro on March 23, adding that the detention of the Earth co-founder had been extended to 30 days.

“In the event that we receive a number of extradition requests, I would like to say that I would like to determine to which state they will be extradited in various cases, such as the gravity of the criminal offense committed, the place and time of the criminal offense committed. The order in which we received the extradition request and various other facts, said through an interpreter Kovač.

Kovač said that decisions about Kwon’s custody will be made by the High Court of Montenegro. According to the justice minister, the co-founder of Terra allegedly used fake passports in Montenegro and could serve time in Montenegro for those crimes if convicted before extradition.

Kwon’s whereabouts had been largely unknown following the fall of Earth in May 2022, though he was often on Twitter as an agent, saying in September that he was making “no effort to hide it.” In February, some reports suggested that Kwon might travel to Serbia – the European country that borders Montenegro to the north – after Interpol issued a red alert for his arrest.

Kwon, a South Korean citizen, is likely to face prosecution in his home country, where Terraform Labs was based and authorities are pursuing people involved in the platform’s collapse. At the time of publication, the location of Earth co-founder Daniel Shin was unknown, but Kwon Han’s partner Chang-Joon was also detained in Montenegro.

It is unclear which country, if any, is most likely to obtain Kwon’s extradition. In parallel, the US is trying to preserve the former custody of FTX CEO Sam Bankman-Fried, who was in the Bahamas at the time of the race crash.

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