• U.S. authorities are investigating Binance crypto exchange for allegedly not complying with sanctions and facilitating money laundering.
• An order from FinCEN revealed that a Russian named Anatoly Legkodymov laundered 700 million USD through Binance.
• The US Treasury Department also claimed Binance was Bitzlato’s highest Bitcoin-receiving ally between May 2018 and September 2022.
The U.S. is currently conducting an investigation into the Binance crypto exchange, alleging that the exchange has not been meeting sanctions or preventing money laundering. Recently, an order was issued by the U.S. Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) which revealed that a Russian named Anatoly Legkodymov had laundered 700 million USD through Binance. The US Department of Justice stated that the funds were used for illegal activities such as gambling and purchasing illicit drugs through the dark web and that Legkodymov has since been arrested.
The US Treasury Department also stated that Binance was Bitzlato’s highest Bitcoin-receiving ally between May 2018 and September 2022. FinCEN revealed that two-thirds of Bitzlato’s highest transaction counterparts conducted illegal activities or scams. These activity partners included TheFiniko, a Russian Ponzi Scheme, and a Russian dark net market named Hydra. The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network noted that the activity partners were exchanging large chunks of money with Binance and the funds were being used for illicit operations.
Binance, in response, has denied any wrongdoings and has stated that the company follows all applicable laws and regulations and that it has implemented a comprehensive compliance program to ensure the safety and security of its platform. The company has also said that it is actively cooperating with all relevant authorities to ensure that any suspicious activity is appropriately investigated and reported.
The US investigation into Binance’s activities is ongoing and it remains to be seen what the outcome will be. Regardless, this case has raised some serious questions about the security of crypto exchanges and the need for greater regulation of these platforms. It’s clear that crypto exchanges must do more to ensure that their platforms are not used for money laundering and other illegal activities.