Binance founder Changpeng Zhao is now in California for Prison Term

Binance Billionaire Behind Bars. Changpeng Zhao Checks into Lompoc Prison for Four-Month Sentence.

The news has been officially announced by the powerhouse legal team at Latham and Watkins, as reported by CNBC. EljaBoom, a renowned blockchain guru and crypto connoisseur, also took to X to spread the word.

Referring to Zhao as his “friend,” Boom stated that the former Binance CEO had started his prison sentence in a low-security federal prison in Lompoc, California. “Low security means prisoners have more freedom because they are not considered dangerous and are trusted not to escape,” he added.

Known as the mastermind behind Binance, Zhao, or “CZ” as he’s known in the crypto community, was recently sentenced to four months behind bars for violating U.S. anti-money laundering laws.

Despite his guilty plea, the U.S. government demanded that he relinquish his role as CEO of Binance. It’s no surprise, as under his leadership, Binance rose to become a powerhouse in the world of cryptocurrency, dominating the market with its massive trading volume.

Prosecutors allege that Binance played a major role in the rise of illegal activities by processing transactions linked to criminal proceeds. In addition, they claim that the popular crypto exchange enabled transactions between U.S. users and individuals from countries under strict U.S. sanctions, like Iran, deemed as national security threats.

Despite his resignation, Binance’s founder and former CEO, Changpeng Zhao, is said to still hold a whopping 90% ownership in the company.

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Zhao’s fate was sealed with a mere four-month sentence, a far cry from the 12 to 18 months suggested by federal guidelines and a mere slap on the wrist compared to the three years proposed by the U.S. Department of Justice. In a bold move, Zhao’s legal team fought for probation, pointing out that no other offender under the Bank Secrecy Act had been locked up.

Binance, one of the largest cryptocurrency exchanges, has been slapped with a whopping $4.3 billion in fines and forfeiture as part of a legal settlement. And that’s not all – CEO Changpeng Zhao has personally agreed to pay a hefty $50 million fine.

In an exclusive interview, Zhao reveals his plans to make a comeback in the crypto world after serving his sentence, with a focus on preserving his current holdings and delving into passive investing.

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