Regulators target South Korean crypto lender Delio


  • South Korea’s Financial Services Commission is investigating cryptocurrency lender Delio for allegations of fraud, embezzlement, and breach of trust, following the suspension of its transactions.
  • The investigation includes securing Delio’s financial data, conducting on-site inspections, and evaluating potential lawsuits from victims against the company’s management.
  • This comes as part of a larger effort by South Korea’s government to safeguard cryptocurrency investors, with the recent passage of the Virtual Asset User Protection legislation.

The storm clouds are gathering over Delio, the prominent South Korean cryptocurrency lending platform.

In the wake of the company suspending deposits and withdrawals on June 14, the nation’s Financial Services Commission (FSC) is now launching a thorough investigation into serious allegations including fraud, embezzlement, and breach of trust involving the platform.

The regulators move in

The Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU), a specialized body of the FSC, has reportedly secured data related to Delio’s cryptocurrency operations and financial transactions.

The move aims to scrutinize various suspicions that emerged following Delio’s suspension of transactions. In addition, the FIU is performing on-site investigations to substantiate its findings and uncover any possible illicit practices.

Delio’s legal woes don’t stop with the FSC, however. The company also finds itself in the crosshairs of the prosecution. Several victims, following the suspension of transactions, have filed lawsuits against Delio’s management at the Seoul Southern District Prosecutor’s Office, levying charges of fraud, embezzlement, and breach of trust.

The ramifications for Delio’s top brass, including CEO Jeong Sang-ho, have been immediate and stringent, with travel bans issued preventing them from leaving the country.

Delio’s web of intrigue

Delio, as a reported virtual asset operator (VASP), falls under the regulatory purview of the FIU. On June 13, the platform halted withdrawals of key virtual assets like Bitcoin (BTC), Ethereum (ETH), and Ripple (XRP).

This decision came hot on the heels of Haru Investment, another digital asset manager, stopping its own deposits and withdrawals.

Despite Delio initially claiming that the suspension of transactions was unrelated to Haru’s actions, the company later acknowledged the simultaneous timing of the deposits.

However, as Haru is not registered as a VASP with the government, it does not come under the FIU’s regulation, despite its management also facing lawsuits from the prosecution.

A protective framework emerges

In the broader context, these investigations are part of a concerted effort by the South Korean government to enhance safeguards for cryptocurrency investors.

On June 30, the National Assembly passed the Virtual Asset User Protection legislation, designed to regulate unfair trade practices and shield investors within the crypto space.

This comprehensive legislation combines 19 cryptocurrency-related bills into a singular act. It clearly defines digital assets and establishes penalties for illicit trading activities, such as market manipulation and the misuse of undisclosed information.

The primary focus of the Act is to apply the Capital Market Act first to virtual assets with securities characteristics.

Importantly, the new law places a significant responsibility on VASPs like Delio. These platforms are now required to insure users’ deposits and take responsibility for their protection, guarding against risks such as hacks and computer failures.

As regulators target Delio and the government enhances its protective measures, the question remains: Will these efforts prove sufficient to shield South Korea’s thriving cryptocurrency market from further scandals? Only time will tell.

Disclaimer: The information provided is not trading advice. Cryptopolitan.com holds no liability for any investments made based on the information provided on this page. We strongly recommend independent research and/or consultation with a qualified professional before making any investment decision.

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Jai Hamid

Jai Hamid is a passionate writer with a keen interest in blockchain technology, the global economy, and literature. She dedicates most of her time to exploring the transformative potential of crypto and the dynamics of worldwide economic trends.

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