Binance Ordered to Pay Record-Breaking Fine in US Money Laundering Case – BNN Breaking


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Details of Binance anti-money laundering charges and plea agreement
Binance Holdings Ltd. has been ordered to pay a staggering $4.3 billion as part of a plea deal approved by a US judge.
The penalty marks one of the largest criminal fines ever imposed in the United States against the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange. US District Judge Richard Jones, presiding over the sentencing hearing in Seattle on Friday, characterized the case as one where the company’s ethics were compromised by greed.
Late last year, Binance and its founder, Changpeng Zhao, pleaded guilty to charges related to anti-money laundering and sanctions violations, bringing an end to a protracted investigation by prosecutors and regulators. The plea deal stemmed from Binance’s admission that it had facilitated transactions with entities like Hamas and other designated terrorist groups on its exchange platform.
Prosecutors underscored the gravity of Binance’s misconduct in court filings, emphasizing that it was intentional and orchestrated by senior executives within the company. They argued that Binance’s actions left the financial system vulnerable to exploitation by those seeking personal gain. As part of the plea agreement, Binance agreed to undergo compliance monitoring by an independent firm for up to five years, with the monitor yet to be appointed.
During the sentencing hearing, Josh Eaton, Binance’s deputy general counsel, expressed the company’s acceptance of full responsibility for its past actions. He also highlighted the compliance enhancements undertaken by Binance over recent years. However, US District Judge Richard Jones emphasized that despite being aware of US laws, Binance had consciously chosen not to comply, leading to the significant penalties imposed.
While the sentencing for Changpeng Zhao has been postponed until April, he is expected to face no more than 18 months in prison, despite the potential for a decade-long sentence. In addition to relinquishing his role as chief executive officer of Binance, Zhao has agreed to pay a $50 million fine. The plea deal seeks to deter similar misconduct by Binance and other companies while safeguarding customers from future vulnerabilities in the financial system.

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