Crypto giant Binance’s United States based unit, Binance.US, is temporarily halting some of its services including One Common Billing System (OCBS) and Binance USD (BUSD) stablecoin pairs after halting Apple Pay and Google Pay deposits.
According to Binance.US status dashboard, the cryptocurrency exchange has stopped BUSD crypto deposits and withdrawals, or buying, selling and converting crypto options, on March 31. However, the firm is currently investigating the issue, noting that the services are “suspended temporarily.”
The moves comes shortly after Binance.US paused Apple Pay and Google Pay deposits citing,
“Due to recent developments in the banking industry, the company will be transitioning to new banking and payment service providers over the next several weeks.”
Additionally, for less than 5% of customers, debit card deposits will be temporarily unavailable from March 30.
Binance.US Hit by Criminal Complaint
This comes amid increasing scrutiny over Binance.US’ parent company, Binance.
Recently, the company and its CEO and founder Changpeng Zhao were sued by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) in the United States for operating an “illegal” exchange. The CFTC alleged that from July 2019 to the present day, Binance, “offered and executed commodity derivatives transactions on behalf of US persons” in violation of US laws.
Meanwhile, Catherine Coley, the ex-CEO of Binance.US has hired an attorney to advise her in the CFTC’s lawsuit against Binance. According to the formal demands submitted by the government agencies, Binance and Binance.US have been asked to provide the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) with records of and contacts involving Coley.
The CFTC also accused Binance’s former Chief Compliance Officer Samuel Lim of “aiding and abetting” Binance’s violations. Responding to the charges, Zhao wrote in a blog post,
“The allegations are unexpected and disappointing; we do not agree with the characterization of many of the issues alleged in the complaint.”
SEC’s Animosity With Crypto
The lawsuit comes amid a broader and increasingly high-profile crackdown on crypto companies. On March 30, US SEC Chair Gary Gensler requested the Joe Biden administration to allocate a record $2.4 billion in funding for the regulator, emphasizing the need to curb “misconduct” in the industry.
Following a string of charges against several crypto outfits, the SEC charged crypto exchange Beaxy and its executives on March 29, for failing to register as a national securities exchange, broker, and clearing agency.