S. Korean Local Court Confiscates 191 Bitcoin

It was the first time for a local enforcement agency in South Korea to confiscate cryptocurrency which was gained from illegal activities
01 February 2018   288

The Suwon District Court ruled on Wednesday to seize 191 Bitcoins (~1 833 600$), as the profits were illegally obtained. The case concerned a person surnamed Ahn, who was indicted for operating adult sites, which is illegal in South Korea. The sites had 1.4 million registered members. 

Ahn was arrested last year for taking membership fees with Bitcoins, which the court believes is illegal. The Southern Gyeonggi Provincial Police Agency seized Ahn's 191 Bitcoin. It was the first time for a local enforcement agency to confiscate cryptocurrency which was gained from illegal activities in South Korea.

The court regarded cryptocurrencies as "actual assets," which have monetary value. The ruling added the criminal profit prevention law includes all types of properties, not just cash but goods which have economic value based on conventional social ideas, adding that cryptocurrencies have economic value.

Attorneys said the latest ruling doesn't necessarily mean that the court has given legal authority for digital currencies or confirmed their status as official currencies. 

It is worth mentioning that the Suwon district court ruled last year that "Bitcoin is not subject to confiscation." 

The ruling just showed that cryptocurrencies are assets and law enforcement agencies can seize or confiscate them if profits are in accordance with criminal activities.

 

 Suk Keun-bae

An attorney at Shin and Kim law firm

We have recently reported that South Korea launched a real-name trading system for cryptocurrencies, banning the use of anonymous bank accounts in transactions to prevent cryptocurrency from being used for money laundering and other illegal activities.

Arizona to Protect Crypto Nodes Legally

According to the public records, proposed protections for cryptocurrency node operators are moving ahead in Arizona's legislature
21 February 2018   44

On February 6 House Bill 2602 was filed by Representative Jeff Weninger (R.-17). It passed the Arizona House of Representatives on February 20 with 55 out of 60 votes. Now it will be sent to the State Senate.

The bill will prevent governments in the state from imposing restrictions on people who run nodes in their residences.

The bill does not specify whether it is restricted to cryptocurrency miners. However, the bill states that individuals using computing power to either validate or encrypt a transaction on a blockchain are protected.

This is just one out several bills making their way through the Arizona legislature. Another bill by Weninger would formally define the terms "coin", "blockchain," and "initial coin offering" within the state's legal framework.

Another bill recently passed by the Arizona Senate which would empower the state government to accept taxes in bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies.