Voyager-Binance.US' $1B Deal Should Be Halted, U.S. Government Says

The Department of Justice doesn’t like provisions that would render Voyager immune from prosecution for former wrongdoing

AccessTimeIconMar 15, 2023 at 8:17 a.m. UTC
Updated Mar 15, 2023 at 8:34 p.m. UTC

The $1 billion deal offered by Binance.US to buy assets of bankrupt crypto lender Voyager Digital should be put on hold while key legal objections are ironed out, the U.S. government said in a filing on Tuesday.

The move follows an appeal by the U.S. Trustee, a branch of the Department of Justice responsible for bankruptcy cases, which has concerns the deal would effectively absolve Voyager and its staff from breaches of tax or securities law.

“The Court cannot tell the Government to speak now or forever hold its peace before Voyager and Binance.US wed,” the filing by U.S. Attorney Damian Williams said. “Nothing in the Bankruptcy Code permits courts to exculpate parties from liability to the Government for past and future conduct.”

Williams said approval of the deal should be put on hold – or at least those parts that limit the government’s ability to enforce the law – until appeals are dealt with in higher courts.

Last week, bankruptcy court Judge Michael Wiles in New York approved the deal after showing considerable skepticism about the arguments by the Securities and Exchange Commission that Voyager’s VGX token might be an unregistered security.


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Jack Schickler is a CoinDesk reporter focused on crypto regulations, based in Brussels, Belgium. He doesn’t own any crypto.

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