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India Slams $2.25 Million Fine On Binance For Violating Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

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India Slams $2.25 Million Fine On Binance For Violating Anti-Money Laundering Regulations

Binance, the global cryptocurrency exchange, is facing battles on multiple fronts, with a hefty fine in India and serious allegations in Nigeria.

News About Nigeria reports that India’s Financial Intelligence Unit (FIU) has imposed a fine of 188.2 million rupees ($2.25 million) on Binance for violating anti-money laundering regulations.

Meanwhile, in Nigeria, the company is embroiled in an ongoing court trial involving accusations of tax evasion and money laundering.

In India, virtual digital asset service providers like Binance are required to be registered with the FIU as reporting entities and comply with anti-money laundering rules.

Despite registering with the FIU in May to resume operations after receiving show-cause notices for violating local regulations, Binance has been found guilty of breaching the Prevention of Money Laundering Act (PMLA) of 2002.

A document titled ‘Order in original No. 10/DIR/FIU-IND/2024 in the matter of Binance u/s Section 13 dated 19.06.2024’, obtained by newsmen details the violations.

The FIU noted that Binance continued to provide services in India without adhering to statutory obligations under the PMLA.

This led to a notice issued on December 28, 2023, compelling Binance to explain its non-compliance.

The FIU’s findings confirmed that Binance violated several sections of the PMLA, resulting in the substantial fine.

Specific violations included contraventions of Section 12(1), PMLA rw Rules 7(1), PML Rules; Section 12(1), PMLA rw Rules 3(1)(D) and 7(3), PML Rules; and Section 12(1), PMLA rw Rule 8(2) PML Rules.

Binance has been directed to ensure diligent compliance with the PMLA and related regulations to prevent money laundering and combat the financing of terrorism.

Simultaneously, Binance is facing severe scrutiny in Nigeria.

The Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has accused the company of tax evasion, while the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) alleges that Binance laundered over $35 million through its platform.

The Federal Government has also accused the cryptocurrency exchange of influencing foreign exchange rates, prompting stricter oversight of crypto trading platforms.

In February, Nigerian authorities detained two senior Binance executives—Nadeem Anjarwalla, the regional manager for Africa, and Tigran Gambaryan, the head of financial crime compliance—following a meeting related to the Federal Government’s ban on cryptocurrency channels and a campaign against currency speculation.

Last week, the Federal High Court discharged Gambaryan and Anjarwalla from the tax evasion case filed by the FIRS, but the FIRS has since filed amended charges, naming Binance as the sole defendant.

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