Binance founder Changpeng Zhao has reported to a low-security federal prison in Southern California, where he will serve a four-month sentence.

JUST IN: Former Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao sentenced to 4 months in prison. pic.twitter.com/i1gdlcTWzs

— Bitcoin Magazine (@BitcoinMagazine) April 30, 2024

The former Binance CEO is now the richest person to go to prison in the US. In April, Forbes ranked Zhao as the wealthiest person in crypto with a $33 billion fortune.

Binance Founder CZ to Serve Time At A Low-Security Prison

Zhao reported to the Lompac II prison in Southern California, where he will serve time as inmate 88087-510. The prison has 2,160 inmates.

Zhao is not the only influential name to serve time at the prison. It also housed Reed Slatkin, who was accused of spearheading one of the biggest Ponzi schemes.

Low-security prisons tend to have better conditions than high-security prisons. At Lompac II, the inmates can work at a nearby farm to cater to animals and grow produce.

The conditions at the Lompoc II facility are in stark contrast to the New York prison where FTX co-founder Sam Bankman-Fried is serving his 25-year sentence.

Zhao pled guilty to failing to implement an anti-money laundering system at Binance. He was ordered to pay a $50 million fine, and serve a four-month prison sentence.

The prosecutors initially asked for a 36-month prison sentence, while Zhao’s attorneys sought five months of probation.

CZ Turning Over A New Leaf

Shortly before his sentencing, Zhao sent a letter to Judge Richard Jones apologizing for failing to implement adequate compliance measures at Binance.

In the letter, Zhao noted that he did not want the charges against Binance to be left unresolved and rather to settle them before the court and start over.

“I wanted to right my wrongs, turn the page, and start the next chapter of my life,” Zhao said.

While it remains unclear whether Zhao will resume his roles at Binance and the crypto industry, he has shown interest in focusing on education programs and blockchain adoption.

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