HomeNewsCourt Orders Binance to Release Nigerian Traders’ Data to EFCC

Court Orders Binance to Release Nigerian Traders’ Data to EFCC

Date:

Justice Emeka Nwite of the Federal High Court, Abuja has ordered Binance Holdings Limited to provide the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) with the comprehensive data or information of all persons from Nigeria trading on its platform.

Justice Nwite granted the interim order after ruling on the ex-parte motion moved by the EFCC’s lawyer, Ekele Iheanacho.

The interim order was granted to enable the anti-graft agency unravel the alleged money laundering and terrorism financing on Binance, a crypto currency exchange platform.

The ex-parte motion was brought pursuant to Sections 6(b), (h), (I), 7(1), (a)(2), and 38 of the Economic and Financial Crimes Establishment Act, 2004 and Section 15 of the Money Laundering (Prevention and Prohibition) Act, 2022 (as amended) and the inherent powers of the court.

In the affidavit in support of the motion deposed to by an operative of the EFCC, Hamma Bello, he said he was attached to the Special Investigation Team (SIT) of the commission domiciled in the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA).

Bello averred that following the inauguration of the Technical Committee on Currency Stability and Forex Manipulation by the ONSA, the SIT “received an intelligence stating the nefarious activities (money laundering and terrorism financing) on Binance.

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

Bello, who said that the matter was of utmost urgent public interest, said the data provided, would enable the commission accomplish its investigation activities.

He said it was in the interest of justice to grant the application as refusal of the request would largely hamper the commission’s investigation.

“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).

Binance is a cryptocurrency exchange that lists more than 350 cryptocurrencies globally.

In addition to cryptocurrency trading, it offers several services that enhance the experience for users and blockchain developers.

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