US law stipulates that Zhao could face up to 18 months in prison. The prosecution is seeking double that for "willful violations".

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Zhao, 47, one of the most powerful figures in the crypto industry, admitted last November that he failed to comply with anti-money laundering requirements and then resigned as Binance's top executive. Binance agreed to pay a fine of $4.32 billion after this confession.

Prosecutors say Binance failed to report more than 100,000 suspicious transactions to several groups, including Hamas, al-Qaeda and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).

Prosecutors also say the platform promoted the sale of child sexual abuse material and was the recipient of a large portion of the ransomware proceeds.