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Thai Regulator Queries Zipmex CEO for Alleged Ilegal Operations


  • Thai SEC opened a new quest into Zipmex on suspicion that it has broken the law.
  • The regulator requested its CEO to make clarifications before next Thursday.
  • Last year, Zipmex froze customer account access and halted withdrawals.

According to local media reports, the Thailand Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) is determining whether the bankrupt Zipmex crypto exchange violated state regulations by offering some digital asset services.

The report noted that the regulator had written to Zipmex CEO Akalarp Yimwilai last year, warning that the company could have been acting illegally as a digital-asset fund manager. The Thai SEC gave the CEO until January 12, 2023, to make clarifications.

The rift between Zipmex and the Thai SEC dates back to 2016, when the regulator subjected the exchange to a police investigation, alleging that the crypto firm provided incomplete information in its procedural compliance documents.

A few years later, Zipmex froze customer account access and halted withdrawals, citing financial difficulties. Notably, V Ventures, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Thoresen Thai Agencies PCL, is about to acquire Zipmex for about $100 million. By April 2023, the exchange expects to unfreeze customer accounts using funds from the acquisition, according to a report.

Last month, the Thai government announced that it was designing a new process to improve digital asset governance, including more stringent regulations to increase investor protection. The asset regulator highlighted the recurrent failures of significant virtual asset managers as a primary concern, prompting the new move.

The Thai SEC consequently set up a committee consisting of relevant government agencies and private sector representatives to study and suggest ways to improve digital asset laws.

Last September, the Thai SEC initiated a public hearing on banning deposit-taking and lending services. The proposed prohibition would make it illegal for operators to accept crypto deposits on the promise of increased repayment, even if those funds originate from marketing budgets rather than the assets’ rising worth.

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