Binance‘s service coin, BNB (BNB), came under serious selling pressure once again in the midst of the latest news flow regarding a critical issue surrounding the cryptocurrency exchange. This selling pressure came in response to claims that the US Department of Justice (DoJ) has found evidence that Binance violated the sanctions imposed on Russia.
BNB fell to $203.59 on August 22, a drop of up to 3.6%, bringing its losses to 15% since the beginning of the year. This decline occurred despite a value increase of approximately 50% recorded since December, pushing its total market capitalization above $1 trillion and despite Bitcoin‘s (BTC) increase in value by over 56% since the start of the year. Currently, BNB is trading at around $213 with a market capitalization of approximately $33 billion, making it the fourth largest cryptocurrency.
Binance has been going through tough times recently, dealing with issues with regulatory and payment partners in different jurisdictions. Furthermore, amidst regulatory issues, Checkout.com became the latest company to stop providing payment services to Binance.
After Ukraine’s occupation last year, the US began imposing sanctions on Russia. These sanctions forced Binance to reduce its operations in Russia, but externally compiled findings show that Binance is still achieving significant trading volumes in Russian rubles.
According to The Wall Street Journal (WSJ), the US Department of Justice (DoJ) discovered that Binance users were able to transfer funds from sanctioned banks to their exchange balances through brokers. In addition, Binance facilitates peer-to-peer exchanges with Russian rubles, often involving banks blacklisted by the West. Evidence obtained from the cryptocurrency exchange’s website, user screenshots, and messages in official chat groups confirm these actions.
A source close to the matter confirmed to WSJ that the DoJ is investigating Binance regarding possible violations related to the US. A Binance spokesperson stated, “Binance complies with global sanctions rules and restricts access to its platform for individuals, organizations, institutions, and countries blacklisted by the international community. Binance has no relationship with any banks in Russia or elsewhere.”