Australian Regulators Search Local Binance Offices in New Probe

Binance offices in Australia have been invaded by personnel of the Australian Securities and Investments Commission ASIC). The search was carried out yesterday Tuesday 4 July as part of an ongoing probe of the exchange’s defunct derivatives business.

In a statement shortly after the report, a Binance spokesperson said: “We are cooperating with local authorities, and Binance is focused on meeting local regulatory standards in order to serve our users in Australia in a fully compliant manner.”

There was however no confirmation or denial of the news. The ASIC had in February canceled the operational license of Binance Australia Derivatives operated by Oztures Trading Pty Ltd. it all started with Binance’s misclassification of retail investors as wholesale.

The derivatives license was canceled within a month of the probe, and Binance has since ceased offering derivatives trading services to customers in Australia. It seems the probe has been renewed and now Binance is facing new issues concerning the old derivatives case.

This is coming at a time when Binance is under pressure from all around the world, with regulators clamping down on the platform all at once.

Binance’s Troubles Multiply

Binance is facing intense regulatory pressure in the US currently as the securities and exchange commission (SEC) has charged it with violating securities laws and mishandling user funds. The exchange has been in court for over a month now, but that’s not the only challenge it is facing.

Binance is also facing regulatory challenges in Europe, where it has either been denied operational licenses such as the case in the Netherlands, or has been asked to stop offering its services as is the case with Belgium.

As a result, the exchange recently started considering focusing in the United Arab Emirates where regulations are also strict, but are more forgiving towards crypto companies. Binance’s woes in the USstarted many years ago, leading to the creation of Binance.US, a special arm of Binance created to cater to US customers. Even then, the SEC has not relented in haunting the exchange.

Binance isn’t the exchange facing challenges in the US though. Coinbase, an indigenous US crypto exchange is facing similar charges in court as Binance. However, Coinbase has filed for dismissal of the case against it, saying the SEC allegations are baseless since the exchange was scrutinized by the SEC before it went public in 2021.

Another exchange, Bittrex which has also closed down its US office because of the SEC’s troubles has also filed for a dismissal of an ongoing case against it, citing many reasons including lack of a fair warning prior to the SEC’s court filing.

Binance in Australia

This is not the first time Binance is facing hurdles in Australia. Although the country is one of those open to crypto innovation, it is also a cautious country when it comes to protecting its citizens from the risks of crypto investing.

Binance earlier this year lost its fiat banking partner, PayID due to a decision the company made. Although no clear reason was given, it may be connected to the financial regulator’s interference, and Binance has halted AUD deposit and withdrawals since. The exchange still seeks a new banking partner till this date.

Australia’s bank has also instructed banks to stop transactions exceeding $10,000 to crypto exchanges in a bid to protect investors if it is suspected that such payments are for buying crypto assets.

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