The authorities from South Korea have arrested 14 people for illegal cryptocurrency mining. According to the authorities, the people involved were also accused of disloyal competition.
According to local news, the owners of four industrial complexes from the Gwangju region (Southwest of the country) allowed several companies to use their facilities to mine bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies. The Metropolitan Police has reported that the mine owners were taking advantage of a 10 percent discount on the electricity bill in comparison with other companies and a lower cost of the rent.
According to the Gwangju police, the discount in rent and electricity is a major violation of the rules which are imposed over cryptocurrency mining. Furthermore, the companies will be fined and the owners will be sanctioned.
Since August 2017 the shopping centers located in the industrial complexes have prohibited its merchants to mine cryptocurrencies. The shopping centers have motivated at that time that it is very dangerous since the stores don’t have the required ventilation systems which could ultimately lead to fires. Besides that, the electricity consumption would skyrocket.
Despite this mini ban, the authorities have found out now that many companies were still mining for cryptocurrencies.
The local report goes on and says that the mining companies have installed since may 2017, between 100 and 350 mining devices on the rented facilities.
There were six companies in Hanam Industrial Complex, three in Nano Industrial Complex, three in Pyeongdong Industrial Complex, and one in Jeongok Industrial Complex.
While many countries, including South Korea, are starting to create legal frameworks and taxes for cryptocurrencies and mining, many companies have started to look for crypto havens. All of them are looking for good environments where the price of electricity is low and the weather relative cold. Countries like Switzerland, United States, Canada or Iceland have become the first choice for crypto mining businesses.