HomeNewsCrypto Shockwave: Binance Founder Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering Violations, steps down

Crypto Shockwave: Binance Founder Pleads Guilty to Money Laundering Violations, steps down

In a stunning turn of events, Changpeng Zhao, the founder of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, has pleaded guilty to money laundering violations, dealing a severe blow to the most influential figure in the global crypto industry. The new reports revealed this development on Tuesday.

Binance, as an entity, has also pleaded guilty and agreed to pay a hefty $4.3 billion in fines and restitution to the government. The settlements were reached with the Justice Department, the Treasury Department, and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, all of which have been investigating the company for several years.

As part of his guilty plea, Zhao has accepted a $50 million fine and will step down from his role as the company’s chief executive. He faces up to 18 months in prison under federal sentencing guidelines, with the possibility of a stiffer penalty, according to statements of senior Justice Department officials shared with media houses.

In a parallel plea deal, Binance has agreed to the appointment of a government monitor to oversee its business operations. As per court papers, Zhao is prohibited from involvement in Binance until three years after the monitor’s appointment.

Zhao and a representative for Binance entered the guilty pleas in federal court in Seattle. Binance, in a statement, acknowledged its responsibility for historical criminal compliance violations. Richard Teng, a top executive, is set to take over as chief executive, with Zhao remaining available for consultation on historical areas of the business.

Tweeting on X, formerly known as Twitter, Zhao admitted to making mistakes and expressed a commitment to taking responsibility. He also revealed plans to take a break from his demanding schedule and engage in “passive investing” in various crypto projects.

For the cryptocurrency world, this development marks a monumental shift. Binance has been a key player, at times processing two-thirds of all digital currency trades. Zhao, often considered the richest man in crypto, boasts over 8.5 million followers on the platform.

This guilty plea by Binance and its founder follows another blow dealt by the Justice Department this month. Sam Bankman-Fried, the disgraced crypto mogul, was convicted of fraud in a criminal trial related to the collapse of his FTX crypto exchange.

For the latest tech news and reviews, follow us on Twitter, Facebook, and Google News. For the latest videos on gadgets and tech, subscribe to our YouTube channel.



  1. The SEC and US authorities have been relentlessly targeting CZ and Binance over the past few years. What concerns me is the fact that the US authorities did not use the same extremely aggressive approach, tactics and investigation against FTX and Sam Bankman-Fried (until too late) and even after SBF violated his release conditions. Why such difference in treatment? Maybe the fact that Sam Bankman-Fried has US government connections with Gary Gensler through his parents (MIT) and girlfriend Caroline Ellison? The American justice system so far has treated Sam Bankman-Fried and FTX more favorably than CZ & Binance. But this won’t destroy Binance and won’t eliminate their dominant market position – something US authorities have been trying very hard to accomplish. Therefore, CZ used a smart tactic and listened to his lawyers and decided to plead guilty, pay the US fines and preserve Binance as a strong, viable business player in the crypto market. Very smart move and finally new chapter will open in the crypto universe. With the US authorities not pursuing any legal actions against the exchange, it will facilitate Binance’s further growth and help the overall crypto mass adoption. The future is bright and there is tons of new development and progress within the blockchain tech. The next bull run 2025-2026 (assuming all else equal and no more scandals or USDT liquidity issues), with take these hard facts into consideration and it will be the stepping stone for the Wall Street institutions to enter the crypto space via Bitcoin ETFs. Ethereum ETFs, etc. ETFs are coming and that’s why the US and Binance had to settle this fight. It’s great news for the crypto world! With EU’s MiCA Act in action, the US looks like set to develop (in near future) a standard-universal legal framework for the crypto, where all government agencies will be in agreement whether a crypto coin is a utility or a security…


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Latest News

Crypto News