6 February 2023

Executive Linked to Crypto Exchange Bithumb Found Dead Outside His Home: Report

An executive of the largest shareholder of cryptocurrency exchange Bithumb was found dead outside his home. He allegedly committed suicide by jumping off a building while under investigation by Korean prosecutors for embezzlement and stock market manipulation.

Executive Found Dead Amid Investigation of Embezzlement and Stock Price Manipulation

An executive linked to South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, Bithumb, was found dead in front of his home in southern Seoul Friday, Yonhap News reported.

The executive, surnamed Park, is the vice president of KOSDAQ-listed broadcast equipment supplier Vidente Co., the largest shareholder of Bithumb Holdings Co. that controls South Korea’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. Vidente also holds a stake in Bithumb Korea.

According to local media, the executive committed suicide by jumping off a building while being investigated by South Korean prosecutors for embezzlement and stock price manipulation.

Park’s investigations involved allegations against Kang Ji-yeon, head of the kiosk supplier Inbiogen, and her brother Kang Jong-hyun. Inbiogen is the largest shareholder of Vidente. The siblings allegedly colluded to embezzle corporate funds and manipulate stock prices. They reportedly put Park in charge of accounting.

The Seoul Southern District Prosecutor’s Office launched a full-fledged investigation into the case in October last year and raided three firms allegedly connected to Bithumb: Vidente, Inbiogen, and Bucket Studio. Prosecutors are expected to terminate their case against Park upon his death.

In July last year, Vidente said it held discussions about selling its stake in Bithumb to FTX but no deal had been reached. The collapsed crypto exchange filed for bankruptcy in November. FTX and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) have been charged by the U.S. government and regulators with multiple counts of fraud.

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