Court Turns up Heat on Binance’s CZ as Sentencing Nears

The former Binance CEO is mandated to surrender all passports, and notify the government before traveling within the U.S.

Changpeng Zhao sitting in a pot of boiling water.
Created by Gabor Kovacs from DailyCoin
  • The Former CEO of Binance is currently awaiting his sentencing.
  • The former Binance CEO has been restricted from traveling outside of the country.
  • A U.S. court has outlined additional bond demands for the indicted Binance founder.

Following the U.S. Department of Justice indictment of former Binance CEO Changpeng “CZ” Zhao on criminal charges in November, a court ruling confined him within the United States until his trial. The former CEO’s numerous attempts to return home have proven unsuccessful, as prosecutors argue that he is unlikely to return if granted permission to leave.

However, as the trial nears, the legal demands have changed as the court tightens the former Binance CEO’s bond requirements.

Binance CZ’s Freedom Restricted 

According to a court filing on Monday, the U.S. government has further restricted Zhao’s freedom, imposing new mandates requiring him to notify pretrial services before traveling within the United States.


The former Binance CEO must surrender his Canadian passport to a third-party custodian under the supervision of his counsel. In addition, all expired and current passports belonging to the former CEO must be relinquished to his counsel, and they can only be reclaimed with authorization from the court.

The court’s modifications also include an additional layer of restriction: They prevent Zhao from obtaining a new passport without legal permission, effectively curtailing any potential means of travel.

Zhao’s bond modifications come on the heels of the extension of his sentencing hearing by an additional 66-day period, postponing the date from Feb. 23 to April 30 and prolonging the former CEO’s involuntary stay in the United States.

CZ’s Travel Requests Denied 

Despite the payment of the largest $4.3 billion legal fine in the history of the United States and a personal $175 million bail package, United States prosecutors have imposed constraints on the former CEO, prohibiting him from setting foot outside of the United States.


On December 7, 2023, U.S. Judge Richard Jones delivered the first in a series of rejections to CZ’s attempts to return to his home base in the United Arab Emirates. The judge emphasized the former CEO’s financial status as a multi-billionaire with overseas assets behind the U.S. government’s reach, asserting his likelihood to flee.

Undeterred by the initial ruling, CZ’s counsel filed another motion with the court on December 22, offering his equity in Binance.US, worth approximately $4.5 billion, as collateral. The team further cited the “hospitalization and surgery” of a close family member, requesting a travel period of one to four weeks to the UAE. However, the court again rebuffed their efforts, reiterating that the Binance founder poses a “significant flight risk.”

CZ faces a potential 10-year prison sentence. While his original plea deal grants him the right to appeal any sentence exceeding 18 months, the government’s intensifying actions have raised doubts about its enforceability.

On the Flipside

  • The new modifications to CZ’s bond requirements contradict the initial conditions of his plea deal and raise questions about the fairness of the legal proceedings.
  • CZ has been on a months-long hiatus since his indictment and recently re-appeared on social media platform X.
  • Binance is still facing legal troubles with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission.

Why This Matters

The sudden modification of Zhao’s bond requirements by the United States government underscores the intensifying scrutiny of his actions as he awaits trial and suggests the potential severity of his sentence.

Curious about why the $4.3 billion has done little to help the exchange and its former CEO’s troubles, read here:

Why Binance’s $4.3B Plea Isn’t a Turning Point for Regulation

Read more about the underperformance of the native token of the Sui ecosystem:

SUI Struggles to Reclaim ATH as It Relinquishes Rally Gains

This article is for information purposes only and should not be considered trading or investment advice. Nothing herein shall be construed as financial, legal, or tax advice. Trading forex, cryptocurrencies, and CFDs pose a considerable risk of loss.

Grace Abidemi

Grace Abidemi, a cryptocurrency reporter at DailyCoin, covers industry developments and trends. She previously worked as a freelance writer. With a Bachelor's degree in German Language and certifications in marketing and storytelling, Grace creates engaging content. When not working, she's in Nigeria, mastering cooking and canvas painting, and enjoys learning about different cultures and languages.