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BREAKING: FG Drops Tax Charges Against Binance Executives

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The Federal Government has dropped tax evasion charges against two executives of Binance, the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange.

Tigran Gambaryan, a US citizen and Binance’s head of financial crimes compliance, and Nadeem Anjarwalla, a British-Kenyan national and regional manager for Africa, were both released from the charges after Binance appointed a local representative to face court proceedings on its behalf.

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The charges were filed in February, with Gambaryan being taken into custody and Anjarwalla escaping Nigeria in March.

The Nigerian Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) had accused Binance and its executives of evading taxes on cryptocurrency transactions worth millions of dollars.

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FIRS on May 17 amended the charges, alleging that the cryptocurrency exchange company failed to collect and remit various categories of taxes, particularly the Value Added Tax (VAT) and Company Income tax (CIT), to the Nigeria’s federation account as provided by Section 40 of the FIRS Establishment Act, 2007.

Minister of Information, Idris Mohammed, had claimed that Binance made a turnover of over $20 billion in Nigeria in 2023 alone.

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However, Binance maintained that it had done nothing wrong and that the charges were unfounded.

According to a Binance spokesperson, the court’s decision to drop the charges against Gambaryan and Anjarwalla is a vindication of the company’s stance.

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“We are pleased that the court has recognized that Tigran Gambaryan is not a decision-maker at Binance and does not need to be held in order for Binance to resolve issues with the Nigerian government,” the spokesperson said. “We await the court’s ruling on this, discharging Tigran from this matter completely.”

Despite the dropped charges, Binance and its executives still face separate money laundering charges in Nigeria.

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The company has denied these allegations as well, stating that it has robust anti-money laundering measures in place.

The federal government has been critical of Binance, blaming it for exacerbating the country’s currency woes by allowing Nigerians to trade the naira on its platform.

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The government claims that this has contributed to chronic dollar shortages and a record low for the naira.

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