Legal Battle: US Prosecutors Seek 3 Years In Jail For Binance Founder

As the United States authorities prepare to sentence Binance founder Changpeng “C.Z.” Zhao on April 30, prosecutors have requested jail time for the former C.E.O.

According to a court filing on April 23, U.S. prosecutors are seeking a 36-month prison term for Binance founder Zhao after he pleaded guilty to violating laws against money laundering.

“The magnitude of Zhao’s willful violation of U.S. law and its consequences warrant an above-guideline sentence of 36 months,” wrote the prosecutors in the filing to the U.S. district court for the Western District of Washington.

The filing added, “The agreed $50 million fine, along with the 36-month sentence, is deemed sufficient but not greater than necessary to balance the relevant 18 U.S.C. § 3553(a) factors and achieve the goals of sentencing.”

Changpeng Zhao at the Viva Technology conference in Paris in 2022. Source: CNBC

However, Zhao admitted to breaching U.S. money laundering regulations and resigned from his C.E.O. role at Binance in Nov 2023. He was also personally fined $50 million, and Binance faced even larger penalties.

Binance CEO Launches Giggle Academy

Moreover, Online reports say Zhao could get up to 18 months in prison according to federal guidelines. He promised not to appeal any sentence up to that. He’s been out on a $175 million bond.

C.Z. admitted breaking U.S. money laundering laws. His company, Binance, agreed to pay $4.3 billion to settle the case. In exchange, Binance can keep operating if it follows U.S. laws.

Even though he stepped down from Binance, CZ is still part of the cryptocurrency world. In March, he said he’s starting a new project all about crypto and blockchain. He made it clear there won’t be any new tokens involved.

However, the project is called Giggle Academy. C.Z. says it’s for kids like two—or three-year-olds. He posted about it on X on April 18.

Further, on April 24, CZ revealed the logo for his new education project. He said, ‘We wanted the Giggle Academy logo to represent youth, fun, positive energy, and growth. We also want to honor our Binance heritage.’

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