HomeNewsCourt Tells Binance To Release Data To EFCC In Terrorism Financing Probe

Court Tells Binance To Release Data To EFCC In Terrorism Financing Probe

Binance Holdings Limited has been ordered by Justice Emeka Nwite of a federal high court sitting in Abuja to provide the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission with the comprehensive data or information of all persons from Nigeria trading on its platform.

The order was granted following an ex-parte motion moved by the EFCC’s lawyer, Ekele Iheanacho. In the motion deposed to by Hamma Bello, an operative of the EFCC attached to the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the commission domiciled in the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA), he stated that they “received an intelligence stating the nefarious activities (money laundering and terrorism financing) on Binance, a crypto currency exchange platform.”

He added: “That on receipt of the Intelligence, the team began investigation by conducting surveillance of the activities of the platform.

“That the team uncovered users who have been using the platform for price discovery, confirmation and market manipulation which has caused tremendous distortions in the market, resulting in the Naira losing its values against other currencies.

“That the damage the platform has caused was clearly explained to the operators of the platform and they were requested to delist the Naira and avail the ONSA on the activities of the Nigerians on their platform.

“That from the information afforded to the team by Binance shows that the total trading volume from Nigeria in 2023 alone stood at $21.6 (twenty one billion, six hundred million dollars).

“Attached and marked as Exhibit EFCC 1 is a copy of the document from Binance to the ONSA stating this fact amongst others. That the commission will ensure that investigation is conducted within such reasonable time.”

Bello also said that it is utmost urgent public interest, that the data be provided to enable the commission accomplish its investigation activities. He said refusal of the request woulf largely hamper the commission’s investigation.

Granting the application, Justice Nwite said: “The applicant’s application dated and filed 29th February, 2024, is hereby granted as prayed. That an order of this honourable court is hereby made directing the operators of Binance to provide the commission with comprehensive data/information relating to all persons from Nigeria trading on its platform.”

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