Illinois Judge Rules US Can Take Ownership of Crypto Stored in Binance Account

News | July 5, 2024 By:

On Friday, June 21, 2024, the US District Court for the Southern District of Illinois ruled in favor of the United States government in a criminal forfeiture case involving illegally obtained cryptocurrency.

The case involved digital currency that had been seized during a federal investigation into alleged wire fraud and money laundering. The cryptocurrency, of an unspecified type, had been stored in a Binance exchange account under the user ID 505137746. In its complaint, the government claimed the currency was derived from criminal activity and subject to forfeiture based on federal statutes pertaining to wire fraud, money laundering, and forfeiture of illegal proceeds.

After obtaining a warrant, the US Secret Service seized the cryptocurrency from the Binance account on November 8, 2023. Notice of the pending forfeiture case was subsequently published for over a month to allow any third parties to challenge the seizure. When no claims were filed, the court entered a default judgment against the property in May.

On June 21st, Chief District Judge Nancy Rosenstengel formally granted the government’s motion for a judgment and decree of forfeiture. In her ruling, Judge Rosenstengel ordered that all right, title and interest in the confiscated cryptocurrency now belongs to the United States. The digital currency, stored using blockchain technology, will be disposed of by the Secret Service as permitted by law.

Please contact BlockTribune for access to a copy of this filing.