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According to the estimation of researchers, about $2.3 billion worth of Bitcoin (BTC) has remained frozen, due to the ongoing public security bureau investigation, which the crypto exchange based in Malta, OKEx, has been subjected to over the past few days.

Users of the cryptocurrency exchange have not been allowed to execute any withdrawal and the reason why this persists remains unclear.

Caixin, a China-based media group earlier reported that Xu Mingxing, the founder of the cryptocurrency exchange OKEx, was arrested by the police about a week ago.

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Based on the accounts of two anonymous sources close to OKEx, the unavailability of Mingxing is the major reason behind the frozen funds, which currently prevents users from initiating withdrawal on the crypto exchange.

The press release published by OKEx regarding the issue reads as follows:

“One of our private key holders is currently cooperating with a public security bureau in investigations where required. We have been out of touch with the concerned private key holder. As such, the associated authorization could not be completed.

Pursuant to 8.1 Service Change and Interruption of the Terms of Service, OKEx may change the Service and/or may also interrupt, suspend or terminate the service at any time with or without prior notice.

In order to act in the best interests of customers and deliver exceptional longtime customer service, we have decided to suspend digital assets/cryptocurrencies withdrawals as of [October 16, 2020, at 11:00 (Hong Kong Time)].”

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Jay Hao, the CEO of the crypto exchange under investigation, took to Twitter about two days ago to reassure users about the safety of their funds:

“All operations OKEx except digital asset/cryptocurrency withdrawals remain unaffected. All your funds and assets are safe. The investigation concerns a certain private key holder’s personal issue only. Further announcements will be made.”

Glassnode, a popular on-chain analytics platform reveals that OKEx presently holds hundreds of thousands of Bitcoin (BTC) worth more than $2 billion.

“According to our data, around 200,000 BTC (1.1% of the circulating Bitcoin supply) are currently held in OKEx wallets. That is around $2.3 billion worth of $BTC stored in the exchange’s vaults.”

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Tobi Loba

By Tobi Loba

Tobi-Loba is a creative and an award-winning writer with over 5 million readers from all over the world. She has B.A in English and Literature from a reputable University and currently studying for her M.A in the same field. She recently became a contributor at Herald Sheets in order to satisfy her thirst in reporting crypto and blockchain occurrences, the interest she built over the years.