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Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao Agrees to Step Down, Plead Guilty


The chief executive of Binance, the largest global cryptocurrency exchange, plans to step down and plead guilty to violating criminal U.S. anti-money-laundering requirements, in a deal that may preserve the company’s ability to continue operating, according to people familiar with the matter. 

Changpeng Zhao is scheduled to appear in Seattle federal court Tuesday afternoon and enter his plea, according to court records unsealed Tuesday. Prosecutors also unsealed a document charging Binance, which Zhao owns, with anti-money-laundering and sanctions crimes. Binance will also plead guilty and agree to pay fines totaling $4.3 billion, which includes amounts to settle civil allegations made by regulators, the people said.

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