Korean Police Seize Crypto For Unpaid Traffic Fines In Trial

A South Korean city near Seoul has successfully implemented a pilot program that allows police to seize crypto from the exchange accounts...



A South Korean city near Seoul has successfully implemented a pilot program that allows police to seize crypto from the exchange accounts of individuals with traffic fines.

Gunpo, a city of about 275,000 people in the northwest province of Gyeonggi, was selected by the national government to run the pilot program in 2022, which took place on Aug. 16. report news outlet JoongBoo Ilbo said it was a way to collect overdue funds in a “contactless” or “non-contact” way.

The program appears to have been successful, at least in the first half of 2022, with Gunpo police achieving an 88% collection rate on traffic fines totaling $668,000, setting the city on pace to significantly exceed its goal of chasing $759,000 in traffic fines by the end of the year.

However, the trial only saw overdue fines totaling an excess of approximately $759 by an individual subjected to crypto seizures by the police, while the crypto seizures were only a measure taken if the funds on the individual’s bank accounts were already depleted.

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Jungo Ilbo said fines collected in the first half of the year already exceed total annual collections in each of the past three years.

The Korean crypto market is lucrative for law enforcement because it reached $45.9 billion in 2021although the report did not indicate what crypto would be seized and sold to pay fines.