In a move to prevent former Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao from leaving the United States, U.S. government prosecutors have raised concerns about his potential flight risk.
On November 22, a submission to a federal court in Seattle requested a reconsideration of a judge’s decision that allowed Zhao to go back to his residence in the United Arab Emirates, posting a $175 Million bond.
This bond comes with the condition that Zhao must return to the U.S. two weeks prior to his sentencing scheduled for February 2024.
U.S Prosecutors Argument
The government points to Zhao’s ties and favoured status in the UAE, as reasons to block his departure:
“There is no combination of conditions sufficient to protect against the risk of flight and ensure Zhao’s return from the UAE for sentencing, and he cannot establish by clear and convincing evidence that he is not likely to flee if he is allowed to return to the UAE given his significant assets, his strong ties to the UAE, and the government’s inability to extradite him from the UAE. Thus, Zhao should be required to remain the United States between his plea and sentencing.”
The prosecutors also express concern that, given the opportunity, Zhao might choose to stay in the UAE with his family, where the majority of his wealth is held outside U.S. jurisdiction.
Recent Binance Saga
Zhao recently admitted to the failure of Binance’s Anti-Money Laundering program.
This led to his resignation as Binance CEO and a $50 million fine.
Despite industry experts viewing Binance’s settlement with the Justice Department as a positive outcome for the crypto industry, concerns about Zhao’s potential evasion of U.S. sentencing continue.
Furthermore, cryptocurrency markets have swiftly recovered from the negative developments concerning one of the industry’s most mysterious and influential figures.
The total market capitalisation, however, has rebounded to pre-Binance news levels.
It reached $1.48 trillion during the Thursday morning Asian trading session.