Police in South Korea on Wednesday raided and seized the offices of Coinbit, the country’s third largest crypto exchange, over allegations it faked 99% of its trading volume.
According to a report from Seoul News, local police took control of Coinbit’s headquarters in Gangnam as well as other sites elsewhere.
Police accuse the exchange’s owner Choi Mo and other managers of “wash trading”. For about a year until May 2020, the process earned Coinbit 100 billion won ($84 million) in profit fraudulently, it said.
A wash trade is a form of market manipulation in which an investor simultaneously sells and buys the same financial asset to create misleading, artificial activity in the marketplace. It is illegal in most jurisdictions.
In the case of Coinbit, the exchange was functionally split into two operational accounts containing all user funds, say police. Fraud within the first account involved major cryptocurrencies bitcoin (BTC), ethereum (ETH), ripple (XRP), and tether (USDT), which Coinbit staff moved internally between “ghost…