The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) is investigating Binance over allegations that Russian agents used the platform to circumvent financial sanctions.
According to a Bloomberg report citing five anonymous sources, Russia has been supposedly moving money through Binance to avoid sanctions imposed on the country in 2022 for invading Ukraine.
The DOJ’s national security division is leading the investigation, which is yet to determine whether Russia used the platform or whether someone inside Binance helped the country to avoid sanctions.
In addition, the DOJ is conducting a separate criminal investigation against the crypto company, which could see the company and top executives charged with anti-money laundering violations.
Binance is currently in talks with the DOJ and U.S. authorities to resolve these allegations, including whether U.S. adversaries are using the exchange to circumvent sanctions.
The company claims to have launched an initiative in 2021 to completely overhaul its corporate governance structure, including a zero-tolerance approach to double registrations, anonymous identities, and obscure sources of money.
Despite Binance’s attempts to clean its name, almost all major regulators in the U.S. have their eye on the exchange for similar reasons.
However, the company’s founder and CEO, Changpeng Zhao, celebrated the exchange’s involvement in an investigation that arrested perpetrators charged with child abuse, drug trafficking, and public corruption.
Binance has also launched a six-part documentary portraying cooperation with international authorities across multiple jurisdictions.
Binance’s head of Financial Crimes Compliance, Tigran Gambaryan, stated that the myth that crypto is anonymous and allows for illicit activity is actually quite the opposite.