It’s been announced that Founder Changpeng (CZ) Zhao has stepped down as the CEO of Binance as part of a big USD4 billion (~Php222.4 billion) settlement between the United States government agencies and his crypto exchange company.

The announcement made last Tuesday ended the yearslong investigation by the US Department of Justice and other agencies into anti-money laundering violations and sanctions violations of the company.

Zhao also announced his departure on X by saying “I made mistakes, and I must take responsibility,” and added that stepping down is “best for our community, for Binance, and for myself.”

In a press release, Binance expressed that they will take responsibility for their lack of appropriate compliance controls.

Zhao may give up his CEO duties, but will remain the company’s majority shareholder and will be a consultant “on historical areas of the business.” The said CEO duties will be handed to another executive at Binance, Richard Teng.

Part of the settlement included Zhao appearing in a Seattle federal court last Tuesday to plead guilty to anti-money laundering and sanctions violations by the Department of Justice.

Binance has also settled the charges with the Justice Department and Commodities Futures Trading Commission; the Department of Treasury Financial Crimes Enforcement Network and the Office of Foreign Assets Control, which will provide the treasury department access to the books and records of Binance under the terms of a five-year monitorship.

The Department of Treasury said that they have made “unprecedented action” to hold Binance accountable for their violations. The department claims that the company didn’t prevent and report “suspicious transactions with terrorists,” which apparently included ISIS and Al Qaeda.

For the settlement, Binance had to pay a USD3.4 billion penalty to the Financial Crimes and Enforcement Network, USD968 million to the Office of Foreign Assets Control, and will have the said 5-year monitoring period and compliance requirements.

Source: Forbes

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