The legal problems of the largest cryptocurrency exchange in the world; Binance, seem not to end, as new information suggests that the platform is being investigated in France since the beginning of 2022.
According to In a story published in the French newspaper Le Monde, the France-based arm of the cryptocurrency exchange has been the subject of a preliminary investigation -carried out by the Finance Judicial Investigation Service under the direction of the specialized interregional jurisdiction of Paris- since February 2022.
The Paris Prosecutor’s Office would have cited as the basis of the investigation “acts of illegal exercise of the function of service provider on digital assets (PSAN), and acts of aggravated money laundering, by participation in investment, concealment, conversion operations, the latter carried out by perpetrators of crimes that have generated benefits” .
Apparently, Binance did not follow or comply with the “Know Your Customer” procedures, that control users and possible money laundering activities.
The exchange allegedly failed to obtain a license to operate in the country and illegally offered its services to French clients. Since 2019, exchanges must obtain approval from the Autoridad de Mercados Financieros (AMF) to operate. However, Binance, which has been operating in France since 2020, reportedly did not receive such approval from the AMF until May 2022.
A Binance spokesperson told Cointelegraph:
“Binance invests a lot of time and resources in cooperating with law enforcement globally. We abide by all laws in France, just as we do in all other markets in which we operate. We will not comment on the specific details of police investigations or regulatory, except to say that information about our users is kept secure and is only provided to government officials upon receipt of appropriate documented justification.”
News of the investigation in France emerged just weeks after a lawsuit against the exchange in the United States. The US Securities and Exchange Commission has filed 13 charges against the exchange’s US affiliate, Binance.US, and its CEO, Changpeng Zhao.
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