Mt. Gox CEO Karpeles out on bail in Japan

The software executive was charged after the world's biggest Bitcoin exchange collapsed

Mark Karpeles, the former CEO of the collapsed Mt. Gox Bitcoin exchange, was released on bail on Thursday, just under a year since he was arrested by Japanese police.

Japanese broadcaster Nippon TV showed video of Karpeles, 31, walking out of the Tokyo Detention House and getting into a waiting taxi. The broadcaster said he was freed on bail of ¥10 million ($95,000) and is prohibited from leaving Japan under the bail terms.

In the pictures, Karpeles looked noticeably thinner than on Aug. 1 last year when he was arrested at his Tokyo apartment.

His arrest came more than a year after Mt Gox collapsed in early 2014. At the time it was riding high on a Bitcoin bubble that had made it the world's largest Bitcoin exchange. Its failure hit many who had bought Bitcoin during a surge of interest in the cyber money system at the end of 2013.

During that period, the price rose from around $118 at the end of September 2013 to almost $1,000 less than two months later. Today one Bitcoin is worth $662, according to Coindesk.

Nippon TV said Karpeles is accused of putting ¥5 million of Mt Gox money into his own bank account and misappropriating a further ¥340 million in funds. Before his arrest, Karpeles denied many of the accusations leveled against him.

Since his release on Thursday, his Twitter account has remained silent.

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Martyn Williams

IDG News Service
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