Investors Lose Millions in ICO Linked to Russian Wreckage
An investigation was launched after suspicious activities were witnessed days to the ICO launch. Already, the group’s CEO has been barred from travelling outside Korea.
Shibil Group ICO Turns Into Scam
South Korean authorities have revealed that investors lost millions in the ‘Russian treasure ship ICO’. The ICO was backed by a Korean company. Records indicate that over 200 people have lost about US$8 million in Shinil Group offering.
The firm alleged that it had recovered a wreck that had sunk years back. The investors were notified that the ship contained gold with a market value of $130 billion.
Additionally, investors are said to have put their money behind the Shinil Gold Coin token. Investors were told the coin was supported by the gold found in the ship. The wreck was identified as Dmitri Donskoi which was deployed during the war. The ship sank off the coast of Korea after damage from missiles fired by Japanese troops in 1905.
However, police hold the view that the losses might be higher than estimated. The current loss figure was arrived at through reviewing the user accounts already identified. Seoul’s police bosses said that the tracking of more users is still ongoing and they will make an update later.
However, the department added that there is a chance that the number of affected investors might drop if it emerges that an individual moved funds using various accounts.
Suspicious Activities Around Shinil Group
In July Shinil revealed that it was planning to launch an ICO. In an online video, the group had recovered the ship which had 200 containers of gold coins and over 5000 of gold bars. However, many concerns were raised since similar discoveries had been announced elsewhere.
Back in 2000, a Korean agency based in ocean research alleged that in collaboration with a construction firm they had discovered the wreckage.
Keen observers pointed out that the group failed to file for rights of the discovery from authorities. More suspicion was raised after the group operated without any online platforms such. The crucial white paper was also missing.
Such shortcomings led to investigations that saw Shinil boss Choi Yong-Seok prohibited from external travel.