Asia's weekly TOP10 crypto news (Apr 29 to May 5)
Colin Wu . 2024-05-05 . Data

1. Hong Kong Bitcoin Spot ETF Holds 4,218 BTC Three Days After Launch link

After three days of trading, the Hong Kong Bitcoin spot ETF holds a total of 4218 BTC. Among these holdings, the ChinaAMC Bitcoin ETF holds 2092 BTC, the Harvest International Bitcoin ETF holds 1107 BTC, and the Bosera Bitcoin ETF holds 1019 BTC. According to Soso Value data as of May 3rd, the net asset value of the three Ethereum spot ETFs in Hong Kong is estimated to be $48.52 million USD based on the closing price of ETH that day. Together, these ETFs hold approximately 16,000 ETH, with the ChinaAMC Ethereum ETF holding about 7100 ETH, the Harvest Ethereum ETF holding about 4800 ETH, and the Bosera HashKey Ethereum ETF holding about 4400 ETH.

2. Russia to Impose Strict Restrictions on the Circulation of Cryptocurrencies link

Starting from September 1st, Russia will enforce strict restrictions on the circulation of cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, allowing only the issuance of digital financial assets within its jurisdiction, excluding cryptocurrency miners and central bank-supported test projects. This law aims to limit non-Russian cryptocurrency operations to strengthen the dominance of the ruble. The circulation of cryptocurrencies will not be prohibited, but establishing exchanges outside experimental legal regimes will be subject to prohibitive restrictions.

3. South Korea to Establish Dedicated Unit for Digital Asset Crimes Investigation link

The Ministry of Justice and the Ministry of Interior and Safety in South Korea will begin discussions in early May to elevate the Virtual Asset Crime Joint Investigation Team to an official department. The purpose of this promotion is to solidify the department’s status, as it currently operates as a temporary organization under the Seoul Southern District Prosecutors’ Office and may face dissolution. The department consists of approximately 30 experts from seven financial and tax regulatory agencies, established in July 2023 as South Korea’s first investigation body dedicated to digital asset crimes.

4. Singapore’s Largest Money Laundering Case Perpetrator, Zhang Ruijin, Sentenced to 15 Months, Assets Worth Over a Billion SGD Seized link

One of the defendants in Singapore’s largest-ever money laundering case, Zhang Ruijin, has been sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty. This case has now seen five individuals convicted. Zhang Ruijin was involved in money laundering totaling approximately SGD 36 million, the highest amount among the convicted defendants, resulting in the longest sentence. The total value of assets seized from Zhang Ruijin is approximately SGD 131 million, including cash, real estate, vehicles, and cryptocurrencies, with about 90% of the assets being forfeited following the case’s conclusion.

5. Police in Changzhi, Shanxi Province Arrest Suspect for Impersonating Others to Obtain STRK Tokens link

Recently, the Xiangyuan County Public Security Bureau in Changzhi City received a report from a victim stating that approximately 40,000 STRK coins obtained through official development efforts on the STRK platform were fraudulently claimed by someone else. Based on relevant clues, the Xiangyuan County Internet Police identified the suspect as Lan, a native of Meizhou City, Guangdong Province. Lan acquired numerous Telegram and Discord accounts, generated a large number of STRK receiving addresses, and falsely assumed others’ identities to submit over 40 ECMP forms, claiming ownership of the victim’s 40,000 STRK coins and transferring them to their own OKX wallet. Subsequently, Lan exchanged the coins for over 91,000 USDT (equivalent to over 637,000 CNY) for personal gain. Lan has been placed under criminal detention according to the law.

6. Binance Assists Indian Law Enforcement in Busting Online Fraud Case link

Binance has announced that its Financial Crime Compliance (FCC) department assisted Indian law enforcement in uncovering the E-Nugget scam, which masqueraded as a gaming platform promising high investment returns to users. This joint operation identified and froze 42 digital asset accounts associated with the scam, along with illegally acquired funds amounting to approximately $6 million and several hundred bank accounts.

7. US Senator Accuses Iran of Using Bitcoin Mining to Evade Sanctions link

Senators Elizabeth Warren and Angus King have written a letter to U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, and National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan, inquiring about the measures the U.S. government is taking to address Iran’s growing cryptocurrency mining activities. The letter highlights Iran’s use of cryptocurrency mining as a means to evade sanctions, posing a direct national security threat. It also mentions Iran’s emergence as a major hub for global Bitcoin mining, with its central bank channeling cryptocurrency to fund its economy. Additionally, the senators raised concerns about Iran’s involvement in cryptocurrency money laundering and its ties to ransomware operations.

8. Suspected Chinese Crypto Community in Singapore Targeted in Robbery, Malaysian Suspect Arrested link

A residential unit in King Albert Park, Singapore, was the scene of an armed robbery involving at least four men targeting 11 victims aged 25 to 45, believed to be associated with the Chinese cryptocurrency community. The victims were relieved of various valuables, including Singaporean and foreign currency, cryptocurrencies, and luxury brand watches, amounting to approximately SGD 4.34 million. With the cooperation of the Royal Malaysian Police, two suspects aged 28 and 32 were apprehended on April 27th and 28th in Malaysia. These individuals were subsequently extradited back to Singapore on April 30th.

9. Do Kwon’s Lawyer: Civil fine of nearly $1 million would be more appropriate link

Terraform Labs and its co-founder Do Kwon’s legal team argue that a civil penalty close to $1 million would be more appropriate following allegations of fraud, rather than the $53 billion proposed by the U.S. SEC. They contend that the court should not impose any injunction relief or forfeitures. Previously, the SEC asserted that Do Kwon and Terraform should pay $47 billion in ill-gotten gains and prejudgment interest, with Terraform and Kwon facing civil penalties of $420 million and $100 million, respectively.

10. VanEck: Total value of Bitcoin held by various ETFs, countries, and companies currently estimated at around $175 billion link

VanEck’s latest report indicates that the collective value of Bitcoin held by various ETFs, countries, and companies currently amounts to approximately $175 billion. According to CoinGecko’s data, this represents about 15% of the total Bitcoin supply. VanEck notes in the report that institutional investors’ interest in Bitcoin has also been growing. Hedge funds, asset management firms, and endowments are increasingly recognizing Bitcoin’s potential as a store of value.

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