SEOUL, Jan. 19 (Korea Bizwire) – A South Korean cryptocurrency policy advisor who has made over 10 million won via investment in cryptocurrencies is being accused of using inside information for personal gain.
A member of the Financial Supervisory Service, whose name remains anonymous, enjoyed a profit margin of over 50 percent after selling his cryptocurrency before the government announced stricter regulations on cryptocurrency trades.
The official in question reportedly invested a total of around 13 million won in cryptocurrency on separate occasions, having left over 20 million won in his account.
Two days after the official’s last recorded transaction, the Office for Government Policy Coordination, which the official was working for at the time, announced plans to ban cryptocurrency transactions among minors, and tax investment returns.
The suspicious timing has prompted an investigation into what many see as an unethical act by a government insider who could have used confidential information for his own personal gain.
Following the report, the Financial Supervisory Service said the facts are being confirmed and that appropriate measures will be taken after the investigation wraps up.
The official in question has reportedly claimed during questioning that he wasn’t aware of the cryptocurrency regulations that were made public soon after, citing previous trades.
Not surprisingly, the reports of an official inside a government so strict on cryptocurrency making profits have upset many investors.
Kim Jun-hee, a 32-year-old cryptocurrency investor, says the news could put a bad light on the government’s overall economic policy.
“Though my life is not dependent on cryptocurrency investment as I do it with spare money, I find the FSS member’s behavior very upsetting. When many people were left confused, someone in power used inside information for their personal gains.”
Park, another investor in his early 30s, said, “I didn’t like the lack of coordination between government branches before announcing regulations. And it’s hard to believe this has happened with financial authorities on top of everything.”
Despite having worked at the Office for Government Policy Coordination, being a member of the FSS means the official in question doesn’t have the status of a government worker. And since cryptocurrencies, unlike stocks, are not considered financial products, financial authorities argue the official is not legally bound to abstain from investing in cryptocurrencies.
Hyunsu Yim (firstname.lastname@example.org)