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Binance, CEO Changpeng Zhao Plan to Seek Dismissal of CFTC Complaint Over Alleged Regulatory Violations




Binance is also under investigation by the Justice Department for suspected money laundering and sanctions violations.
By Reuters | Updated: 25 July 2023

Binance and its CEO and founder Changpeng Zhao are planning to seek the dismissal of a Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) complaint accusing the crypto exchange of violating the Commodity Exchange Act and certain related federal regulations.

Binance is due to submit its response to the CFTC complaint on July 27 and plans to seek dismissal, according to a court filing on Monday.

The CFTC in March sued Binance, the world’s biggest crypto exchange, and Zhao for operating what the regulator alleged was an “illegal” exchange and a “sham” compliance program.

In its complaint, the CFTC said that from at least July 2019 to the present, Binance “offered and executed commodity derivatives transactions on behalf of U.S. persons” in violation of U.S. laws.

The CFTC and Binance did not immediately respond to Reuters’ request for comment.

Binance and Zhao were also sued by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) in June for allegedly operating a “web of deception,” listing 13 charges against Binance, Zhao and the operator of its purportedly independent U.S. exchange.

Binance is also under investigation by the Justice Department for suspected money laundering and sanctions violations, Reuters reported earlier.

Meanwhile, a cryptocurrency developer’s landmark legal victory against the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) will galvanize Coinbase and other companies to resist the agency’s attempt to assert its jurisdiction over the industry, experts said.

Thursday’s ruling that Ripple Labs did not violate securities law by selling its XRP token on exchanges was the first major setback for the SEC in a decade of enforcement against the cryptocurrency industry. Other crypto firms accused of illegally operating digital asset exchanges are exploring ways to take advantage of the ruling, according to two sources familiar with the matter who asked not to be named because they were not authorized to speak publicly..

The crypto industry is in a tug-of-war with the SEC and its Democratic chair Gary Gensler, who has described the crypto market as a “Wild West” riddled with fraud. Saying most crypto tokens are securities, the SEC has cracked down on crypto trading platforms, including the top US exchange Coinbase, in an effort to bring the industry under its oversight.

© Thomson Reuters 2023