Binance Nigeria Case Postponed Until April 19th Amidst Criminal Charges

Julia Smith
Last updated: | 2 min read
Binance executives, Nigeria crypto, Binance Nigeria case

The arraignment of two Binance executives held against their will by Nigerian authorities has been postponed until April 19 as the country seeks criminal charges against the Nigeria crypto duo, an Abuja court hearing reveals.

Binance’s head of financial crime compliance, Tigran Gambrayan, and the regional manager for Binance in Africa, Nadeem Anjarwalla, were originally detained in Nigeria’s capital in late February.

Binance Executives’ Hearing Delayed Amidst Criminal Charges


Despite both facing charges of money laundering and operating a crypto exchange without proper licensing, only Gambrayan attended the court hearing on Thursday as Anjarwalla was able to escape captivity last month successfully.

Judge Emeka Nwite agreed to adjourn the hearing until April 19 following news of an additional tax evasion charge against Binance.

The postponement marks the latest twist in a nearly two-month legal saga for the crypto exchange, which has long advocated for the release of its detained employees at the hands of Nigerian authorities.

“Binance respectfully requests that Tigran Gambaryan, who has no decision-making power in the company, is not held responsible while current discussions are ongoing between Binance and Nigerian government officials,” the crypto exchange said in an April 3 statement.

INTERPOL Reportedly Takes On Binance Nigeria Case


The Nigerian legal delay comes just one day after news broke that the International Criminal Police Organization (INTERPOL) is working on the case in hopes of extraditing Anjarwalla to Nigeria.

“Mr Anjarwalla’s extradition process has begun,” Nigerian news site The Punch reported. “The Federal Government is working as did with INTERPOL to extradite the fugitive to Nigeria. He’s a fugitive that escaped from lawful custody, and his other partner is still in custody and would be arraigned on Thursday (April 4) alongside their company, Binance.”

On Thursday, Nigeria’s Inspector General of Police, Olukayode Egbetokun, told reporters he was confident in Anjarwalla’s eventual recapture.

“I’m not going to tell you what INTERPOL is doing, but I must tell you that we are doing a lot,” The Punch quoted Egbetokun as saying. “I can assure you that the suspect will be re-arrested.”

Nigeria Cracks Down On Crypto


Despite boasting the continent’s top crypto economy, Nigeria is seeking to increase its regulatory approach to digital assets by effectively banning several exchanges from the country, including Binance, Coinbase, and more. 

Central Bank of Nigeria Governor Olayemi Cardoso announced that $26 billion had moved through the country via Binance in 2023 alone “from sources and users we cannot adequately identify.”

It is unclear what penalty Gambrayan and Anjarwalla could face if they are tried and convicted.