CZ laments US CFTC complaint, hits ‘incomplete recitation of facts, characterization’

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Binance founder and chief executive officer Changpeng Zhao hit the US Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) for its “unexpected and disappointing” civil complaint against the cryptocurrency exchange even he reiterated the platform’s commitment to transparency and cooperation with regulators.

Zhao or “CZ” as he is known lamented the CFTC sued his company despite Binance working cooperatively with the CFTC for over two years.

“Upon an initial review, the complaint appears to contain an incomplete recitation of facts, and we do not agree with the characterization of many of the issues alleged in the complaint,” Zhao said.

“At Binance, we look for amicable solutions to all problems. We are collaborative with regulators and government agencies all around the world. While we are not perfect, we hold ourselves to a high standard, often higher than what existing regulations require. And above all, we believe in doing the right thing by our users at all times.,” he said.

The CFTC has filed a lawsuit against Zhao and Binance, the world’s largest crypto exchange, for offering trades for cryptocurrencies that the regulators said are commodities.

The CFTC also alleged that Binance advised its US clients, among others, to use VPNs to evade regulations.

Zhao sought to address some issues raised against Binance, including compliance.

He said Binance has developed best-in-class technology to ensure compliance. 

“Binance.com is the first global (non-US) exchange to implement a mandatory KYC program and remains today to have one of the highest standards in KYC and AML,” Zhao said.

“We block US users by nationality (KYC), IP (including commonly used VPN endpoints outside of the US), mobile carrier, device fingerprints, bank deposit and withdrawals, blockchain deposits and withdrawals, credit card bin numbers, and more,” he said.

He said the exchange remains committed to transparency and cooperation with regulators and law enforcement (LE)  in the US and globally. 

“Binance currently has more than 750 people in our Compliance teams, many with prior law enforcement and regulatory agency backgrounds. To date, we have handled 55,000+ LE requests, and assisted US LE freeze/seize more than $125 million in funds in 2022 alone and $160 million in 2023 so far,” he said.

He said stressed Binance does not trade for profit or manipulate the market under any circumstances.

“Binance ‘trades’ in a number of situations. Our revenues are in crypto. We do need to convert them from time-to-time to cover expenses in fiat or other crypto currencies,” Zhao said.

“Personally, I have two accounts at Binance: one for Binance Card, one for my crypto holdings. I eat our own dog food and store my crypto on Binance.com. I also need to convert crypto from time-to-time to pay for my personal expenses or for the card,” he said.

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