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Binance founder's request to travel abroad again denied by US Judge

IANS | December 31, 2023 02:02 PM

SAN FRANCISCO: A US judge has again denied Binance founder Changpeng Zhao's (also known as CZ) request to travel abroad as he awaits sentencing for criminal charges.

After prosecutors argued that Zhao was a flight risk, Judge Richard Jones of the US District Court for the Western District of Washington barred Zhao from travelling abroad for the second time, reports Coindesk.

The sealed ruling did not disclose in detail the former Binance executive's argument against the court's repeated efforts to block his return to the UAE, where his three children and their mother reside, the report mentioned.

Zhao stepped down as the CEO of the world's largest cryptocurrency exchange last month, after pleading guilty to federal charges and agreeing to pay $4.3 billion in fines.

“Zhao, a Canadian national, also pleaded guilty to failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering (AML) programme, in violation of the Bank Secrecy Act (BSA) and has resigned as CEO of Binance, ” the Justice Department said in a statement.

According to court documents, Binance admitted to prioritising growth and profits over compliance with US law.

Meanwhile, India's Financial Intelligence Unit has issued show-cause notices to nine offshore virtual digital asset service providers, including Binance, for operating in the country without complying with the money laundering laws, the Finance Ministry has said.

Apart from Binance, notices have been issued to Kucoin, Huobi, Kraken, Gate.io, Bittrex, Bitstamp, MEXC Global, and Bitfinex. The Finance Ministry has also asked the Information Technology Ministry to block the URLs of the companies as they have been operating illegally in the country.

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