Binance founder CZ must stay in US until sentencing, judge orders

A federal judge said former Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao is a flight risk if he returns to the UAE and must remain in the U.S. while awaiting sentencing.

Binance founder Changpeng “CZ” Zhao has been ordered to stay in the United States until his sentencing in February, with a federal judge determining there’s too much of a flight risk if the former exchange CEO is allowed to return to the United Arab Emirates.

On Dec. 7, Seattle District Court Judge Richard Jones ordered Zhao to stay in the U.S. until his Feb. 23, 2024 sentencing date. He faces up to 18 months in prison after pleading guilty to money laundering on Nov. 21 and has agreed not to appeal any potential sentence up to that length.

“The defendant has enormous wealth and property abroad, and no ties to the United States,” Judge Jones wrote, agreeing with earlier arguments from federal prosecutors who said they “would not be able to secure his return” if Zhao decided not to return to the United States.

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