Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao: Steps Down As Part of $4 Billion Settlement with U.S. Authorities – Blockonomi

Cryptocurrency exchange Binance has reached a landmark $4 billion settlement with U.S. authorities to resolve investigations into the company’s anti-money laundering practices and regulatory compliance.

As part of the deal, founder and CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao will step down from his executive role and plead guilty to violating anti-money laundering requirements.

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  • Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao is stepping down as part of a $4 billion settlement with the DOJ and CFTC
  • CZ will plead guilty to anti-money laundering charges and violating AML requirements
  • The settlement does not include the SEC, which filed separate charges against Binance in June
  • As part of the deal, CZ will give up his executive position but retain his majority ownership in Binance
  • The settlement aims to resolve DOJ and CFTC investigations into Binance dating back to 2018

The settlement encompasses probes by the Department of Justice and Commodity Futures Trading Commission into Binance’s operations dating back to 2018. It does not involve the Securities and Exchange Commission, which filed separate charges against Binance in June over allegations it misled investors and operated an unregistered exchange.

According to sources close to the discussions, CZ plans to formally enter his guilty plea on November 21st in federal court in Seattle on charges related to flouting U.S. anti-money laundering rules. While the deal allows CZ to retain his majority stake in Binance, he will be barred from holding an executive position or being involved in day-to-day leadership decisions.

The $4 billion settlement figure would mark one of the largest payouts from a cryptocurrency firm to U.S. authorities. The funds are expected to be distributed to the DOJ, CFTC, and Treasury Department to cover outstanding regulatory claims.

For Binance, the agreement draws the curtain on a multi-year saga with American regulators over its business practices and failure to register with agencies like the CFTC. However, CZ and Binance must still contend with the SEC’s ongoing lawsuit.

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Author: Oliver Dale

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