Crypto News Headlines (04-Oct-2022)

Crypto lender Celsius’ top three executives withdrew $56.12 million in cryptocurrency between May and June 2022, right before the company suspended withdrawals and filed for bankruptcy, new court records show.

According to a Statement of Financial Affairs filed late Wednesday, former CEO Alex Mashinsky, former CSO Daniel Leon and CTO Nuke Goldstein withdrew the funds largely from custody accounts in the form of bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), USDC (USDC) and CEL tokens (CEL).

Over a dozen other executives, including the company’s Chief Compliance Officer, Oren Blonstein, Chief Risk Officer Rodney Sunada-Wong and new CEO Chris Ferraro did not make any significant withdrawals during that time period, according to the document, one of several filed to the Bankruptcy Court for the Southern District of New York.

South Korean prosecutors have reportedly frozen nearly $40 million in crypto assets allegedly belonging to Terraform Labs co-founder Kwon Do-hyeong (also known as Do Kwon). Citing Korean publication News1, journalist Colin Wu tweeted Wednesday:

South Korean prosecutors have frozen $39.66 million of crypto assets, including BTC, owned by Do Kwon through two exchanges. Do Kwon and LFG previously denied trying to transfer their 3,313 BTC after being issued an arrest warrant.

The coins were frozen at cryptocurrency exchanges Kucoin and Okx, the publication noted, adding that the two trading platforms have agreed to freeze Kwon’s crypto at the request of the prosecution.

Global asset management firm GoldenTree revealed a $5.3 million token stake in decentralized exchange (DEX) SushiSwap, with the SUSHI token soaring 13% as bullish investors piled in.

GoldenTree has around $50 billion in assets under management and said it had been “following SushiSwap for a while.” The asset managers recently launched their crypto-focused GoldenChain Asset Management division and said they were “psyched to be more active in all things Sushi.”

GoldenTree said it plans to focus on helping SushiSwap work on its tokenomics and general strategy, among other objectives. SushiSwap is a fork of another popular DEX, Uniswap, and was launched in 2020.

Lithosphere, a next-generation network for cross-chain applications powered by AI, announced via a Medium post on Wednesday, that it has integrated Chainlink Verifiable Random Function (VRF) on the BNBChain mainnet. The integration means that Lithosphere now has access to a tamper-proof and auditable source of randomness needed to help fairly distribute NFTs for our new Finesse fighting game. Thus, creating a more exciting and transparent user experience as players have stronger assurances that everyone has an equal chance of minting the rarest NFTs.

Chainlink Network (LINK) aims to provide tamper-proof inputs and outputs of data for smart contracts on any blockchain.

Senior commodity strategist at Bloomberg Intelligence, Mike McGlone, stated October has historically been the best month for Bitcoin (BTC) since 2014, averaging gains of about 20% for the month, and that commodities appearing to peak could imply that Bitcoin has reached its bottom.

In an Oct. 5 Bloomberg Crypto Outlook report, McGlone says while the rise of interest rates globally is putting downwards pressure on most assets, Bitcoin is gaining the upper hand when compared with commodities and tech stocks like Tesla, with the report noting:

“When the ebbing economic tide turns, we see the propensity resuming for Bitcoin, Ethereum, and the Bloomberg Galaxy Crypto Index to outperform most major assets.”

The European Union has confirmed a sweeping ban on providing crypto services to Russians as it tightens sanctions in the wake of what it calls “sham” secession votes in four Ukrainian regions, which was first reported by CoinDesk last week.

The bloc introduced an eighth set of economic and political measures against Russia after the February invasion, tightening a previous rule which limited crypto payments to European wallets to 10,000 euros ($9,900).

“The existing prohibitions on crypto assets have been tightened by banning all crypto-asset wallets, accounts, or custody services, irrespective of the amount of the wallet,” the European Commission said in a statement on Thursday, after proposals it made last week were signed off by EU governments.

The issue of which federal agency should regulate the crypto market has gained much attention recently. While the chairman of the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), Gary Gensler, has said that the majority of crypto tokens are securities and should fall under the purview of his agency, many people and lawmakers believe that it should be the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) that regulates the crypto sector. Moreover, three bills have been introduced in Congress this year to make the CFTC the regulator of the crypto markets.

In an interview with CNBC Monday, Gensler responded to a question about who should regulate the crypto sector. The SEC chief explained:

Our agency is an agency that oversees this basic bargain. When a group of entrepreneurs is raising money from the public and the public is anticipating a profit, they need disclosure — full, fair, and truthful disclosure, and that’s the core bargain in our capital markets.

It’s a dog-eat-dog world for crypto scammers.

New reports have just revealed how one individual identified crypto scammers in order to rob them of their ill-gotten funds.

Crypto scammers often employ social engineering techniques to interact with victims and convince them to part with their hard-earned money. Scammers do this either by sending funds directly to fraudsters or by providing the permissions needed to get access to wallets.

Water Labbu, the name of the individual who robbed the scammers, reportedly leveraged a similar method to steal cryptocurrencies, obtaining access permissions to their victim’s wallets. They, however, didn’t use any kind of social engineering, leaving the dirty work to the original fraudsters.

The Thorchain team announced via a Medium post on Tuesday that it has completed the integration of Avalanche C-Chain. This means that Thorchain users can now add liquidity and make swaps to and from Bitcoin, Ethereum, and six other base layer protocols.

Furthermore, Avalanche C-Chain users can now swap in and out of the Avalanche ecosystem without the use of bridges. Users interested in exchanging their Avalanche C-Chain assets for other crypto assets can easily do so at any THORChain interface.

THORChain is a decentralized cross-chain exchange where traders can swap cross-chain assets via liquidity pools across Binance Chain, Ethereum, and Bitcoin.

Avalanche is an open-source platform for launching Decentralized Finance (DeFi) applications and enterprise blockchain deployments in an interoperable, highly scalable ecosystem.

After months of investigation without any single arrest and the main offender on the run teasing the enforcers on Twitter, South Korean police have reportedly captured the first person involved in the Terra blockchain ecosystem collapse.

The news about the arrest of Yoo Mo, the head of the business team of Terraform Labs, appeared in Korean media on Oct. 6, later the district prosecutor Choi Sung-kook confirmed the information to Forkast.

The Seoul Southern District Prosecutors’ Office issued a bench warrant on Yoo on Oct. 5, reportedly charging him with the violation of the Capital Markets Act and fraud by manipulating the market price of the stablecoin TerraUSD (UST), now known as TerraUSD Classic (USTC). Authorities did not reveal details of the arrest such as the time.

The arrest warrant on Yoo was issued back in September — the executive is believed to be a part of the inner circle of Terra’s cofounder Do Kwon. On Sept. 26 Interpol issued a Red Notice, “request to law enforcement worldwide to locate and provisionally arrest a person pending extradition, surrender, or similar legal action,” on Do Kwon.