Fintech Nexus Newsletter (May 1, 2024): Binance founder CZ gets four months in prison

Back in the go-go days of 2021 the two biggest names in crypto were known just by their initials: SBF (Sam Bankman-Fried) and CZ (Changpeng Zhao).

They often took to Twitter arguing with each other about where the market was going and whether certain tokens were overvalued. But there were no bigger names than SBF and CZ. They controlled the biggest crypto exchanges, outside of Coinbase: FTX and Binance.

Oh, how the mighty have fallen. We know SBF is going to spend the next quarter century in prison, and yesterday, CZ was sentenced by a Seattle judge to four months after pleading guilty to enabling money laundering at Binance.

The cases and the demeanor of the two former CEOs were very different. SBF orchestrated a years-long fraud while denying he did anything wrong, whereas CZ admitted wrongdoing and took responsibility for his mistakes, but investigators found no evidence of fraud.

The sentences reflect those differences. CZ personally paid a $50 million fine and has been barred from the CEO role at Binance.

Meanwhile, this is probably unrelated, but the price of bitcoin, ethereum and other major tokens are down significantly in the last 24 hours.

> Binance founder Changpeng Zhao sentenced to 4 months in prison after plea deal

By MacKenzie Sigalos, Ryan Browne

Five months after pleading guilty to money laundering violations, Binance founder Changpeng Zhao was sentenced to four months in prison.

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