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Trial To Begin In Absence Of Terra Founder

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Trial To Begin In Absence Of Terra Founder

The legal saga surrounding Terraform Labs co-founder Do Kwon is taking another pivotal turn as the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) prepares to commence its civil trial against him on March 25, despite his likely absence due to extradition delays from Montenegro.

This trial stems from charges related to the catastrophic collapse of TerraUSD (UST) and Luna (LUNA) cryptocurrencies in May 2022, an event that erased approximately $40 billion from the cryptocurrency markets.

Do Kwon Continues To Oppose Extradition To The US

David Patton, Do Kwon’s lawyer, confirmed to Reuters that his client would not request a postponement of the trial, signaling Kwon’s intent to face the SEC’s fraud charges head-on, regardless of his extradition status. “Kwon will not seek to adjourn the trial date, regardless of when he is ultimately extradited,” Patton stated, indicating a resolve to proceed with the legal process.

The SEC’s litigation accuses Terraform Labs and Kwon of deceiving investors about UST’s stability, a stablecoin ostensibly pegged to maintain a $1 value, and misrepresenting the use of the Terraform blockchain for transactions in a prominent Korean mobile payment app.

Complicating Do Kwon’s legal battles are additional US criminal charges, with Kwon having been in custody in Montenegro since March 2023. In December 2023, US District Judge Jed Rakoff found that Terraform Labs and Kwon had breached US securities laws by failing to register UST and LUNA.

This legal determination adds another layer of complexity to the SEC’s case against Kwon, who has consistently maintained his innocence. Moreover, a Montenegrin court recently favored his extradition to the United States over South Korea, Kwon’s preferred destination.

Kwon’s local counsel, Goran Rodic, criticized the court’s decision, citing “erroneous” information regarding the sequence of extradition requests and noting “numerous unanticipated mistakes by the lower courts” in the Montenegrin proceedings that have protracted Kwon’s extradition timeline.

Just yesterday, a report surfaced that Marija Rakovic, a public information officer at Montenegro’s Podgorica High Court, has hinted that its decision on Do Kwon’s extradition to the United States could be overturned by an appeals court again. She noted past precedents where extradition decisions were reversed, as Bitcoinist reported.

Rakovic stressed that her goal is not to forecast the outcome of the Court of Appeal but to recognize the potential for such an occurrence. Obviously, Kwon’s legal team is poised to challenge the high court’s ruling vigorously, seemingly aiming to avert his extradition to the United States.

At press time, Terra Luna Classic (LUNC) traded at $0.000133022.

Terra Luna Classic price
LUNC price recovers above the crucial support (blue line), 1-week chart | Source: LUNCUSD on TradingView.com

Featured image from CNN, chart from TradingView.com

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