The Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) has filed a lawsuit against crypto exchange Binance and its founder Changpeng Zhao (CZ), saying the trading platform offered unregistered products to US customers without proper registration.
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The financial regulator wrote in a complaint against Binance that the exchange "no later than July 2019" offered under CZ's direction a facility for the trading of futures, options, swaps involving crypto "that are commodities" including bitcoin (BTC), ether (ETH), and litecoin (LTC) for clients in the US.
Although Binance publicly denied offering services in the US, the exchange has taken a "calculated" approach to increase its presence in the country, the CFTC added.
"In a later phase, Binance increasingly relied on personnel and vendors in the United States and actively cultivated lucrative and commercially important “VIP” customers, including institutional customers, located in the United States," the lawsuit states.
The agency added that not only Binance and CZ, but also the exchange's former CCO, Samuel Lim, had chosen to "ignore those requirements and undermined Binance’s ineffective compliance program by taking steps to help customers evade Binance’s access controls."
Amid the news, Binance's native token binance coin (BNB) plunged over 4% to $312, according to data from CoinMarketCap. As of press time, CZ made no public statements regarding the matter.
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