Nigerian Court Postpones Binance Trial: Missing Service of Charges Hinders Proceedings

The legal battle between the Nigerian government and cryptocurrency exchange Binance has taken a new turn, with the latest court hearing adjourned until May 17th. This delay stems from a procedural issue: Binance has not yet been formally served with the tax evasion charges against it.

Procedural Hurdle: Binance’s Absence Cited

The complication arose when Tigran Gambaryan, a Binance executive currently detained in Nigeria, appeared in court but did not enter a plea. His lawyer argued that since both Binance and its executives were charged together, Gambaryan could not represent the company until it had been officially served with the charges. This argument hinges on Nigerian legal procedures requiring proper service of charges to all named defendants before proceedings can move forward.

Heightened Tensions: Executives’ Status and Binance’s Response

The adjournment highlights the ongoing tension between Binance and Nigerian authorities. While Gambaryan remains in custody, another executive, Nadeem Anjarwalla, reportedly left the country last month. Additionally, Binance has halted its services in Nigeria following the detention of its executives, further escalating the situation.

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Next Steps: Court Ruling and Parallel Trial

The next court date, May 17th, will likely see a ruling on the service of charges issue. This could pave the way for the tax evasion trial to proceed. Meanwhile, a separate trial regarding money laundering accusations against Binance and its executives, brought by Nigeria’s anti-graft agency, is set to resume on May 2nd.

Broader Implications: Regulatory Concerns in the Crypto Landscape

This case remains a significant development in the cryptocurrency landscape. The Nigerian government’s actions against Binance, including the detention of executives and the service of charges, raise concerns about potential overreach in regulating the industry. The ongoing legal battle will be closely watched for its implications on the future of cryptocurrency operations in Nigeria and potentially beyond. sharemore_vert

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