WazirX finally received a green signal from the Enforcement Directorate of India after its long-drawn anti-money laundering investigation on 5 August 2022. The ED authorities finally unfroze their accounts on the grounds of “no suspicious activities,” pushing things back to normal.
The Money Laundering Case
On 5 August, WazirX, one of India’s largest cryptocurrency exchange platforms, was charged with money laundering, after which the ED froze assets worth 64.67 crore Rupees.
ED also suspected the company of violating the rules of foreign currency exchange. The accusations surfaced after the agency ran searches on Zambia Lab Pvt. Ltd, the company that ran WaxirX. Naturally, it was the immediate and causal suspect. Additionally, several instant loan apps were also seen to use the company’s platform, which was later accused of illegal activities.
While several other fintech companies were also accused simultaneously, some shut down after the investigation. However, such charges had a long-lasting and drastic impact on WaxirX’s reputation. While the ED accused the company of transferring funds for illegal activities, Binance, once eager to acquire WaxirX, also distanced itself. No wonder, WazirX was soon expected to face its doomsday.
WazirX Proven Not Guilty
Though the anti-money laundering investigation lasted for a month, ED finally declared WazirX not guilty as the authorities failed to find illegal activities or fund transfers by the company’s account. The company also mentioned its intolerance of illicit and money laundering activities. The ED also found that WazirX already banned their targeted suspicious fintech companies during 2020-21, leaving no room for the previous accusation.
Can WazirX Operate Like Before
The ED not only unfroze WazirX’s account but also removed the existing money laundering charges on the company. The company’s active participation and cooperation throughout the investigation process, accompanied by zero proof against them, worked in favor. Thus, with the ED unfreezing the company’s accounts, WazirX can resume its regular operations.
WazirX Laid off 40% Of Its Staff
Amid declining business, Crypto exchange WazirX fired about 50-70 employees on 30 September. Specifically, business development, policy, growth, and marketing employees were laid off.
During the last bull run, WazirX was India’s largest exchange by volume, clocking trades of $43 billion. However, following the new tax regime kicked in on 1 April, the trading volumes and revenue earned by charging trading fees have dipped significantly.