Kenya to extradite fleeing Binance executive Anjarwalla to Nigeria: report


Nadeem Anjarwalla

The Nigerian government is working with the Kenyan authorities to extradite fleeing Binance executive, Nadeem Anjarwalla, to the country in the next within the week, The PUNCH has reported.

Anjarwalla The regional manager for Binance in Africa fled Nigeria after his escape from lawful custody on March 22.

He was detained alongside Tigran Gambaryan, a Binance Holdings Limited executive for allegedly offering their platforms for manipulation of the value of the naira, tax evasion and money laundering.

National Security Adviser, Nuhu Ribadu, in a statement, said Anjarwalla used his Kenyan passport to escape from Nigeria.

However, reports some days ago had indicated that working with Interpol, the fleeing Binance executive was tracked down to Kenya where he is now being detained.

According to The PUNCH, Anjarwalla is likely to extradited to Nigeria within the week.

Meanwhile, Nigeria’s anti graft agency, the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) has already arraigned Gambaryan, on a five-count charge bordering on money laundering before a Federal High Court in Abuja.

Gambaryan was arraigned was arraigned alongside the company and Anjarwalla (now at large).

EFCC had filed a money laundering charge against Binance, Gambaryan and Anjarwalla as 1st to 3rd defendants respectively.

In the five-count charge dated and filed on March 28 by the anti-graft commission, the trio is being accused of money laundering to the tune of $35,400,000.

Gambaryan, however, pleaded not guilty to the counts, while a non-guilty plea was also entered for Binance.

The arraignment followed the earlier dismissal of Gambaryan’s preliminary objection by Justice Nwite.

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Mordi had disagreed with the EFCC’s lawyer, Ekele Iheanacho’s application for the charge to be read to Gambaryan.

Mordi argued that Binance, listed as 1st defendant, ought to have been duly served, before Gambaryan could take his plea.

The senior lawyer had insisted that since it was a joint charge, the company must be served before his client could be arraigned.

He said that his client was not a representative of the cryptocurrency firm in Nigeria.

But Iheanacho disagreed with Mordi, saying since Gambaryan represented Binance in Nigeria and that it is the law that he can be served on behalf of the firm.

According to him, if the company does not show up, a non-guilty plea can be entered for it in accordance with Section 478 of the Administration of Criminal Justice Act (ACJA), 2015.

He added that Gambaryan’s statement attached to the proof of evidence showed that he is an official of Binance in the country

Delivering the ruling on Monday, Justice Nwite agreed with Iheanacho’s submission.

The judge held that from Gambaryan’s affidavit attached to his bail application, the American citizen categorically averred that he was representing Binance in Nigeria.

The judge, consequently, dismissed the preliminary objection and ordered him to enter his plea.

Justice Nwite fixed May 2 for commencement of the trial.

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