French prosecutor's office announced an investigation into money laundering on Binance

French prosecutor's office announced an investigation into money laundering on Binance

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Author: Robert Strickland (crypto-journalist)
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The French prosecutor’s office reported on the investigation of money laundering on Binance The French prosecutor’s office confirmed the investigation of money laundering on Binance The crypto exchange is suspected of illegally providing cryptocurrency services and legalizing funds obtained by criminal means under aggravating circumstances

The French branch of Binance is under investigation by local authorities for “illegal” provision of cryptocurrency services and “actions to launder money under aggravating circumstances”, the Paris prosecutor’s office told CoinDesk.

The investigation concerns the exchange’s activities in France before it obtained permission to operate from the French financial regulator AMF (Autorité des Marchés Financiers) in May 2022. In addition, the prosecutor’s office said that the investigation is being conducted in relation to “money laundering under aggravating circumstances by participating in investment operations, concealment, and conversion, the latter being carried out by persons who have committed offenses that have brought profit”.

The investigation against Binance was conducted by a specialized interregional jurisdiction of Paris, then, in February 2022, the case was transferred to government agencies dealing with financial crimes, the prosecutor said.

A representative of Binance said that the exchange continues to cooperate closely with regulators and law enforcement agencies on all current compliance requirements.

“We comply with all laws in France, as well as in all other markets where we operate. We will not comment on the specifics of investigations by law enforcement or regulatory authorities,” Binance said.

The largest crypto exchange faced several lawsuits and increased attention from regulators this year. At the end of March, the U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CTFC) sued the exchange for allegedly violating derivatives trading rules by not registering properly.

The Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) referred to this lawsuit when it revoked the license to provide financial services to the local branch of the exchange Binance in April. Later, the exchange had to stop accepting deposits in Australian dollars due to the refusal of a local payment service provider to work with the crypto platform.

In early June, a lawsuit against Binance was filed by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). The American regulator accuses the platform of a lack of proper registration and sale of unregistered securities.

“Trend to tighten the screws”. What will result from the conflict between SEC and Binance?

In early May, the exchange announced its departure from the Canadian market. According to FinancialPost, the Ontario Securities Commission (OSC) is investigating possible former violations of laws by Binance.

Also, former SEC lawyer John Reed Stark said that the U.S. Department of Justice will file or has already filed under the heading “secret” an indictment in a criminal case related to the crypto exchange Binance. According to Stark, U.S. authorities may charge the exchange with money laundering.

On June 16, the crypto platform announced that it was leaving the Netherlands, as it failed to obtain a local license. The exchange also filed a statement to terminate its registration in Cyprus, stating that it is directing its efforts to develop in EU countries where it has long been legally operating, including France.

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