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FG slams tax evasion charges against Binance

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The President Bola Tinubu-led Federal Government on Monday initiated proceedings against Binance, a prominent cryptocurrency exchange platform, over tax evasion.

The Federal Inland Revenue Service filed the accusations in the Federal High Court in Abuja.

In the complaint, filed under the number FHC/ABJ/CR/115/2024, FIRS accused Binance of four counts of tax evasion, claiming that it was a decisive move aimed at enforcing fiscal responsibility and protecting the country’s economic integrity.

Joined alongside the crypto corporation as second and third defendants in the claim are Tigran Gambaryan and Nadeem Anjarwalla, both senior executives of the firm currently under the custody of the Economic and Financial Crimes Commission.

The charges levied against Binance include non-payment of value-added tax, company income tax, failure to file tax returns, and complicity in aiding customers to evade taxes through its platform.

Binance has been charged with nonpayment of value-added tax, company income tax, failure to file tax returns, and involvement in assisting clients to avoid taxes through its platform.

In the suit, the Federal Government accused Binance of failing to register with FIRS for tax purposes and violating current tax legislation in the country.

Section 40 of the Act addresses the non-deduction and non-remittance of taxes, prescribing penalties, and potential imprisonment for defaulting corporations.

The charges go on to outline specific instances in which Binance is accused of violating tax rules, such as failing to issue VAT invoices and blocking subscribers’ ability to determine and pay taxes.

“Any company that transacts business over N25 million annually is deemed by the Finance Act to be present in Nigeria.

“According to this rule, Binance falls into that category. So, it has to pay taxes like company income tax (CIT) and also collect and pay value-added tax (VAT).

“But Binance did not do this properly. So, the company broke Nigerian laws and could be investigated and taken to court for this infraction,” Adekanmbi said.

According to the law that established it and other provisions, FIRS is authorized to assess, collect, and account for revenue accruing to the Federation, as well as to administer relevant tax laws.

Binance pleaded guilty to violating anti-money laundering rules in the United States in late 2023, agreeing to a plea agreement that cost the business $4.3 billion.

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