The Japan Times has reported Wednesday that a court in Tokyo, Japan has ordered the seizure of crypto assets that have been traced back to the Coincheck hack of January 2018,
It said more than $530 million worth of the NEM (XEM) cryptocurrency stolen from the exchange in 2018 has been seized.
Recall that a 30-year-old doctor from Obihiro, Hokkaido, was arrested in March, together with an accomplice, for buying stolen XEM and for violating a law against participating in organized crime. But police do not believe Doi was responsible for the hack.
The reports stated that the Tokyo District Court placed a protective order on Doi’s digital assets ahead of a police-authorized confiscation of the money. Prosecutors say the tokens were deposited on a domestic cryptocurrency exchange.
Should the suspect be found guilty, the XEM will be seized and forfeited to the government, possibly for auction and compensation to the Coincheck victims.
Bitcoin.com quoted the Japan Times as saying that the court order was believed to be the first such order issued for crypto assets in the Asian country.
Hackers plundered 523 million XEM tokens from Coincheck on January 26, 2018. At the time, the coins’ estimated value totalled $530 million but have declined sharply ever since. Today, the stolen tokens are worth just $38 million.
Coincheck’s theft remains the biggest in the cryptocurrency industry, dwarfing Mt Gox’s $460 million hacks of 2014.