Suspecting tax evasion the South Korean Authorities raid several of the most prominent crypto currency exchanges Wednesday. South Korea has been cracking down on Crypto as a whole the last several months. Starting with banning minors or foreigners from trading. Where in December a total ban on ICO’s was implemented. With this latest move and rumors of a complete ban the price of Bitcoin fell sharply in late trading.
“A few officials from the National Tax Service raided our office this week,” an official at Coinone, a major cryptocurrency exchange in South Korea, told Reuters.
“Local police also have been investigating our company since last year, they think what we do is gambling,” said the official, who spoke on condition of anonymity. He said Coinone was cooperating with the investigation.
Bithumb, The countries second largest exchange too was raided by the tax authorities.
“We were asked by the tax officials to disclose paperwork and things yesterday,” an official at Bithumb said, requesting anonymity because of the sensitivity of the issue.
As of the time of this writing Bithumb is still online and trading continues.
The moves by the South Korean Government appears to be an attempt to slow down the frenzy of investors in the sector. An outright ban seems unlikely as several other countries have attempted them with little success. Even if the ban is in place it will likely only be temporary as digital currencies are border-less and if people want them will figure out how to get them. What we can expect from all of this is clearer guidelines and regulation for the sector as a whole.
Authors Bias:The Mainstream Media is trying to paint this as the end of the Bitcoin Revolution. What needs to be remembered is this is nothing new for those of us who have been involved in the space for several years. In the past both Russia and China banned digital currencies. BOTH nations have reversed those decisions and are working on meaningful regulation.
Image Source: Coinage