‘$3.5m Nursing Care Fund Crypto Thief’ Extradited to South Korea

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Tim AlperTim Alper

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A judge’s gavel next to a set of handcuffs on a wooden table.A judge’s gavel next to a set of handcuffs on a wooden table.
Supply: S…/Adobe

South Korean regulation enforcers have extradited a man suspected of stealing $3.5 million from a nursing care fund to buy cryptoassets earlier than fleeing overseas.

The person, surnamed Choi (aged 46), is a former Nationwide Well being Insurance coverage Company center supervisor.

He was arrested within the Philippines earlier this month after a manhunt that lasted for round a yr and a half.

Investigators mentioned they have been now “specializing in recovering” the fund Choi allegedly stole from a public fund for nursing care.

Hankyoreh reported that police have been “monitoring the whereabouts” of the cash that was allegedly “stolen” between April and September 2022.

Choi, a man suspected of robbing a nursing care fund to buy cryptoassets, is escorted through an airport in South Korea.
Choi, a person suspected of robbing a nursing care fund to purchase cryptoassets, is escorted by way of an airport in South Korea. (Supply: Yonhap TV Information/Screenshot)

Police suppose Choi transformed the fiat he stole to crypto, and was dwelling “a lifetime of luxurious” in a “high-end” resort within the Philippines.

Choi reportedly headed the agency’s monetary administration crew and oversaw nursing automotive advantages funds.

South Korean Authorities Hopes to Recuperate ‘Crypto Thief’s Stolen Funds’


Police escorted Choi, handcuffed, by way of Incheon Worldwide Airport at round 5 am on January 17.

Choi replied “no remark” to a number of information reporters’ questions shortly after arriving on the airport.

Choi, a man suspected of robbing a nursing care fund to buy cryptoassets, moments before his arrest in the Philippines earlier this month.
Choi, moments earlier than his arrest within the Philippines earlier this month. (Supply: Yonhap TV Information/Screenshot)

A police spokesperson confirmed that regulation enforcers had “anticipated that it might take at the least a month to finish the repatriation course of.”

However, following talks with the Philippine Immigration Division, officers defined they have been “in a position to repatriate [Choi]” to South Korea “in simply eight days.”

The Nationwide Well being Insurance coverage Company mentioned that it had already “recovered” over $500,000 price of the funds in 2023.

The Ministry of Well being and Welfare-operated agency mentioned it had seized the funds by way of civil lawsuits.

The South Korean Ministry of Health and Welfare.
The South Korean Ministry of Well being and Welfare. (Supply: Minseong Kim [CC BY-SA 4.0])

And the Nationwide Well being Insurance coverage Company mentioned it was hopeful of recovering extra of the cash following Choi’s arrest.

Earlier this month, police in Icheon said they had arrested a man suspected of stealing cash during a bogus over-the-counter (OTC) crypto exchange deal.



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