- Binance said it removed Suex earlier this year, even before it was blacklisted by the US Treasury Department.
- The agency has sanctioned the Russian crypto exchange for its role in laundering financial transactions for ransomware actors.
- “Make no mistake, this is a positive development for the industry and the millions of innovators, consumers and investors,” Binance said.
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Binance Holdings, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange, said it removed the platform from the recently sanctioned Russian cryptocurrency exchange Suex earlier this year, even before it was blacklisted by the US Treasury Department, according to a blog post published Wednesday.
Suex was sanctioned Tuesday by the Biden administration for his role in laundering financial transactions for ransomware actors. This was the first time the Treasury had blacklisted a cryptocurrency exchange.
The agency added Suex to its list of specially designated nationals, blacklisting 25 blockchain addresses used by the Czech Republic-based company. The designation would generally prohibit all U.S. citizens from engaging in transactions with them.
“We have removed the platform from these accounts based on internal guarantees,” Binance said. “Information regarding the addresses in the advertisement, as well as other information from our internal investigation, has been shared with the appropriate authorities.”
Binance added that several accounts linked to addresses reported by the Treasury were identified by its investigative team earlier this year.
“Make no mistake, this is a positive development for the industry and the millions of innovators, consumers and investors around the world who are contributing to the growth of blockchain every day,” said Binance said.
An analysis of Suex’s transactions showed that more than 40% were associated with illicit actors, according to the Treasury announcement, adding that the crypto exchange also facilitated illicit funds from at least eight ransomware variants.
Suex, according to Binance, is just the latest illicit entity it has taken action against. More recently, his efforts included Operation Fancycat and the Bulletproof Exchanger project.
“At Binance, we recognize what it means to be the industry leader rather than just being the biggest player in the industry,” the company said. “As an industry, we must meet this challenge head-on in partnership with law enforcement agencies around the world.”
Binance itself has not been without controversy. He is being surveyed on possible insider trading and market manipulation by US regulators. He also recently announced the shutdown of cryptocurrency derivatives for existing customers in Australia by the end of the year to appease regulators.
But in September, Binance, which was founded in 2017 and has no official headquarters, said it needed a centralized headquarters to work well with regulators around the world.
The admission comes after months of multiple warnings and, in some jurisdictions, a ban on operating due to its inability to register with local regulators.