HomeCRIME REPORTINTERPOL Confirms Ongoing Process to Extradite Fleeing Binance Chief, Anjarwalla

INTERPOL Confirms Ongoing Process to Extradite Fleeing Binance Chief, Anjarwalla

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Afor Kenneth 

INTERPOL Vice President Garba Umar says efforts are underway to locate and extradite the fugitive cryptocurrency trading platform, Binance chief executive Nadeem Anjarwalla, to Nigeria to face tax evasion charges alongside his colleague, Tigran Gambaryan.

Gambaryan is currently in custody in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital. Umar confirmed that the extradition process for Anjarwalla has already begun.

According to the INTERPOL boss, when a fugitive escapes, the country in pursuit will adhere to established processes to secure their return.

“INTERPOL will only give information, assist them and inform them about the bilateral agreements and conventions that were signed to extradite a fleeing fugitive and the process is ongoing and Nadeem is not an exception.

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“Be rested assured, we have all the cooperation and we are working on it and definitely, one day, he will be brought to justice, it’s just a matter of time. We have done all the paper works,” Umar stated.

In March, the Office of the National Security Adviser (NSA) detained Anjarwalla and Gambaryan over alleged speculation against the Nigerian naira, allegedly contributing to its decline against the US dollar.

Following this, the government sought court intervention to compel Binance to disclose the identities of its Nigerian traders, but the platform resisted.

Moreover, tax evasion charges were filed against the platform. However, the NSA office reported that Anjarwalla escaped custody during a Jumat prayer on Friday, March 22, 2024, in Abuja, purportedly fleeing Nigeria using a smuggled passport.

Subsequently, the Nigerian Government initiated a manhunt, enlisting the help of INTERPOL in locating him.

Commenting on the matter on Tuesday, the INTERPOL chief said, “As soon as this individual escaped, there was a massive manhunt for this individual. Many countries we believed he must have boarded a plane or go by road to, we contacted them and we got some certain information which is not possible to share on this platform.

“Be rest assured, we located where he was, how he boarded, all information about him and how he landed. We have done that to make sure that he doesn’t escape justice.”

Until his escape, Anjarwalla, who holds British and Kenyan citizenship, served as Binance’s Africa Regional Manager. There have been reports suggesting that he fled to the East African country.

On the question of whether Anjarwalla has been captured in Kenya or not, the INTERPOL chief declined to provide further details.

“I’m not aware but what I can tell you is that the last destination I know on my record of this guy when he fled (Nigeria) was Kenya. That I can confirm to you.”

Asked whether the fleeing Binance executive would be returned to Nigeria to face trial, he said that extradition processes were underway and reiterated INTERPOL’s commitment to locating and bringing him to Nigeria to face trial.

“Yeah, once a red notice is issued, we circulate to all member countries within the 196 including where the fugitive is suspected to be hiding.

“Now, it is not only morally right but it is legally right for the country to get him apprehended, inform the requesting country that ‘the fugitive you are looking for has been apprehended and is in our custody. Can you come and take him over?’

“This is the process. He may be in Kenya, he may be in hiding, he might have even left Kenya but because of the notices we have given, wherever he is, he will be smoked out.”

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