Binance Set to Pay $4.3 Billion in Settlement with DOJ as CZ Prepares to Resign: Sources

Binance Set to Pay $4.3 Billion in Settlement with DOJ as CZ Prepares to Resign: Sources

Changpeng Zhao’s Guilty Plea and Binance’s Substantial Penalties

The Wall Street Journal recently reported that Binance founder Changpeng Zhao (CZ) will plead guilty to anti-money laundering (AML) violations as part of a settlement with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ). CZ will step down as CEO of Binance and pay a $50 million personal fine, while the exchange will pay a $4.3 billion fine for its legal violations.

Binance’s Massive Penalty

The Wall Street Journal revealed that Binance is being penalized for conducting an unlicensed money-transmitting business and failing to maintain an effective AML program. Likewise, CZ is charged with failing to implement an effective AML program under the Bank Secrecy Act. According to Reuters, Binance will have to pay $1.81 billion within 15 months and another $2.51 billion as part of its DOJ deal.

The DOJ’s investigation into Binance began in 2018, but it was not until 2021 that the IRS and DOJ started seeking answers from the company. Last month, members of Congress began pushing for the DOJ to take action against Binance, and charges were finally filed on November 14 but unsealed on Tuesday.

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What’s Next for Binance?

Since its founding in 2017, CZ has led Binance to become the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange by trading volume. Despite Binance’s recent turmoil, a study showed that CZ was the most popular man in the crypto community. However, Binance still faces lengthy lawsuits from U.S. financial regulators, alleging mishandling of customer assets and failure to register as a regulated commodities and securities exchange.

It is worth mentioning that BNB, Binance’s native exchange token, has fallen 5.2% to $240 since the announcement of the settlement. Furthermore, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) recently sued U.S.-based crypto exchange Kraken for similar misconduct.

Hot Take: Binance’s Future in Question Amid Legal Troubles

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With CZ’s impending departure and the massive fines imposed on Binance, the future of the cryptocurrency exchange is uncertain. The lawsuits from U.S. financial regulators, coupled with the SEC’s actions against other crypto exchanges, suggest a challenging road ahead for Binance in the U.S. market. It remains to be seen how these legal troubles will affect Binance’s business operations and its position in the global crypto industry.

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Owen Patter is a distinguished crypto analyst, accomplished researcher, and skilled editor, leaving a notable imprint on the cryptocurrency landscape. As a proficient crypto analyst and researcher, Owen delves into the intricate realms of digital assets, offering insights that resonate with a diverse audience. His analytical acuity is harmoniously paired with adept editorial skills, allowing him to transform complex crypto information into easily comprehensible content.