Earlier today, Bloomberg published a report that Changpeng Zhao, alias CZ, the CEO of Binance, was looking to settle with the United States DOJ for $4 billion. Well, it is true. The US DOJ charged Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange, for violating sanctions and money-transmitting laws.
Binance has agreed to pay $4.3 billion to settle the accusations, resulting in “one of the largest penalties” the United States has ever received from a corporate defendant. Changpeng “CZ” Zhao, the company’s founder and CEO, pled guilty to his own charges at an arraignment in Seattle and agreed to pay a $50 million fine.
CZ’s crypto era comes to an end
Following his plea of guilty to criminal charges in the United States and subsequent departure from his highly influential position at Binance, CZ, the former CEO of the largest crypto exchange in the world, is already creating plans for his future endeavors in the crypto ecosystem.
A court document that was unsealed on Tuesday alleges that Binance was found guilty of operating an unauthorized money-transmitting business, failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program, and violating sanctions law.
Another filing states that CZ entered a guilty plea for violating the Bank Secrecy Act and for causing a financial institution to violate the BSA. His sanction will also be deducted from the amount he owes the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, according to a filing with the U.S. Department of Justice.
CZ took to his X page to notify his 8.7 million followers that his era has come to an end. His statements begin as:
Today, I stepped down as CEO of Binance. Admittedly, it was not easy to let go emotionally. But I know it is the right thing to do. I made mistakes, and I must take responsibility. This is best for our community, for Binance, and for myself.CZ
Crypto investors show love for CZ
CZ has told the crypto community of his future plans and starts by stating, “I will take a break first. I have not had a single day of real (phone off) break for the last 6 and half years.” On that note, the crypto community has so much to say on the whole matter.
Another X user said, “Well done, thank you for everything.” This is just the start of the love served to CZ, who many in the industry note as a legend. Another X user adds, “CZ! You are one of the great heroes on the front lines of an epic struggle. You should be immensely proud of Binance. Well done ser, and thank you.”
In the last few hours, the SEC and DOJ have had quite some fun taking down crypto entities like Kraken. Some crypto investors are not too happy about that. One particular user on X assures CZ that the industry knows what these regulators are up to.
Let’s see, is there anyone rejoicing over CZ stepping down? Yes. Brian Armstrong, one of Coinbase’s finest, has taken to X to parade his exchange actions as the best regulatory-compliant entity the crypto industry will see.
Today’s news reinforces that doing it the hard way was the right decision. We now have an opportunity to start a new chapter for this industry. We took a lot of arrows operating here in the U.S. due to the lack of regulatory clarity, and my hope is that today’s news serves as a catalyst to finally achieve that.Brian Armstrong
One sentiment cuts across the industry; many wish CZ all the best as he takes his time off, while others mark him a crypto hero and an “undisputed legend.”