Detained Binance Executive Levels Charges Against Nigerian Government Alleging Human Rights Violation

Tigran Gambaryan, Binance’s Head of Financial Crime, demanded an apology from the nation’s EFCC and ONSA.

A Binance official held in Nigeria has taken legal action against the government for violating his basic human rights. A local publication shows that Tigran Gambaryan, the firm’s Head of Financial Crime Compliance, has filed a motion with the Federal High Court in Abuja.

Binance executive is seeking a declaration that taking away his passport violated the nation’s constitution. Further, Tigran has requested the Economic Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) and the Office of the National Security Advisor (ONSA) be forced to apologize for his incarceration.

Binance Executive Accuses Authorities of Deception

Tigran claimed he was in the country following an invitation from the ONSA and EFCC to deliberate on Bitcoin’s activities. He said he did not commit any wrongdoing during the meeting, and was not informed in writing concerning any crime he was involved in. He also noted that his detention was linked to the government requesting data from the company and making demands on the firm.

In February, Gambaryan was detained together with Nadeem Anjarwalla, Binance’s regional manager for Africa. This happened as the nation’s authorities probed crypto exchanges. Under a court order’s terms, the EFCC was allowed to hold the two without charges for 14 days, concluding in early March. A hearing in mid-March later allowed an extension.

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Anjarwalla ran away from custody and escaped from Nigeria. The official has dual Kenyan and British citizenship and handed this UK passport to Nigerian authorities. However, it is believed that he utilized his Kenyan passport to catch a ‘Middle East airliner’ flight. Additionally, he allegedly filed an equivalent suit as Gambaryan. 

Nigeria Seeks Six-Months Transaction Data from Binance

As part of the probe, Nigeria has told Binance to offer information concerning its top 100 users nationally. This includes their transaction data for the last six months. The nation’s Federal Inland Revenue Service (FIRS) has filed separate tax evasion charges against Binance, Anjarwalla, and Gambaryan. 

Gambaryan is an ex-IRS special agent hired as the company’s Vice President of Global Intelligence and Investigations in 2021. At the agency, he was involved in probes into BTC-E, a Russian crypto exchange, and the hack of Mt.Gox, a Bitcoin exchange, in 2014.

Gambaryan also investigated a case involving a corrupt DEA agent who pilfered millions in Bitcoin from Ross Ulbricht, the Silk Road developer. 

Editorial credit: ANTON ZUBCHEVSKYI /

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