The sentencing day for Changpeng Zhao’s (founder of Binance) criminal case has been delayed by two months to April 30th. The company revealed the delay in a defendant’s filing on Monday in a federal court in Seattle.
Zhao, known widely as “CZ,” pleaded guilty last November to failing to maintain an effective anti-money laundering program. He agreed to step down from his role as Binance CEO and pay a $50 million personal fine.
Meanwhile, Binance itself pleaded guilty to separate criminal charges and faces $4.3 billion in fines. Zhao has remained free on a $175 million bond with travel restrictions before sentencing.
The docket did not specify a reason for the two-month delay. Zhao originally faced sentencing this month. Federal guidelines point to a maximum sentence of 18 months imprisonment, though prosecutors may push for harsher penalties.
Defense lawyer William Burck declined requests for comment on the postponement. The Department of Justice has also not issued a statement. Previous attempts by Zhao to lift his travel restrictions to visit his Dubai residence were denied by the presiding judge, who cited flight risk concerns.
The high-profile case against one of crypto’s most prominent entrepreneurs highlights increasing criminal liability for industry compliance shortcomings. Regulators worldwide are focused on bolstering anti-fraud protections as adoption accelerates.