Crypto

$22M in Bitcoin moves from Huobi to OKEx despite withdrawal freeze

Large Bitcoin (BTC) transactions from Huobi cryptocurrency exchange are moving to OKEx despite the latter having temporarily suspended crypto withdrawals.

According to data from crypto tracking service Whale Alert, a total of 1,995 BTC ($22.5 million) was sent from Huobi to OKEx shortly after OKEx officially announced it was suspending withdrawals on Oct. 16.

The funds were transferred in two separate BTC transactions worth 998 BTC ($11.3 million) and 997 BTC ($11.3 million) at 3:51 a.m. EST and 06:22 a.m. EST, respectively.

The transfers raise some questions as 1,995 BTC is now locked on the platform due to the platform temporarily blocking crypto withdrawals. “Dude go the opposite way,” someone from the crypto community commented on Twitter. Others suggested that the issue could be a result of delayed BTC transactions.

The transactions from Huobi bring a significant amount of Bitcoin to OKEx’s total BTC balance. According to data from BTC balance-based exchange ranking Chain.info, OKEx now holds a total of 276,184 BTC on its cold vault, hot wallets, and deposit wallets. At publishing time, a total of 6,269 BTC left OKEx over the past 24 hours.

Daily net inflow on OKEx. Source: Chain.info

Approximately five hours later, Whale Alert sounded the horn on another large BTC move, but this time the funds seemingly somehow left OKEx, amid closed withdrawals. Someone sent 3,500 Bitcoin, worth roughly $39,627,432 at the time of transfer, to Binance from OKEx, Whale alert tweeted, adding: “We suspect these are internal exchange transfers. We are investigating the matter right now.”

Referring to the 3,500 BTC OKEx withdrawal tweet from Whale Alert, a public statement from OKEx explained:

“OKEx’s wallet team has confirmed that the origin wallet addresses in said transactions do not belong to OKEx. The chief economist at major blockchain analytics firm Chainalysis also confirmed in a tweet today that the transactions in question had been ‘mislabelled’ and were not in fact from OKEx.” 

Earlier today, Chinese media reported that OKEx founder Star Xu was questioned by the police a week ago.

UPDATE Oct. 16, 18:43 UTC: This article has been updated with added information.


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