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An official from the world’s largest cryptocurrency exchange Binance, who was detained in Nigeria, escaped from the country by saying “I need to go to Friday prayers”.

In a special report by the local Nigerian news agency Premium Times, it was reported that one of the two detained Binance officials escaped from the country by using the excuse of “Friday prayers” while being held for tax evasion and other crimes.

Nadeem Anjarwalla, one of the detained officials, managed to briefly get permission by telling the law enforcement that it was the month of Ramadan and he couldn’t miss Friday prayers. Accompanied by officials to the mosque, Nadeem Anjarwalla took advantage of a gap in the plan, managed to go to the airport, and escaped from the country on the first plane.

A Nigerian Immigration Service official said that the Binance executive fled from Nigeria with a Kenyan passport. The official also stated that when he was caught, he only had a UK passport on him, and it is unknown how he obtained the Kenyan passport. Authorities said they are investigating the country he fled to and his current location.

According to a source closely following the matter, both officials had very comfortable conditions in prison, including phone and internet access, and likely made plans to escape during this time.

Tensions between Binance and Nigeria are escalating

Shortly after a statement by the Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Olayemi Cardoso, stating that there was a flow of funds worth $26 billion through Binance Nigeria last year, two Binance officials were arrested at the airport and their passports were confiscated.

The Binance officials were accused of foreign exchange manipulation, tax evasion, and illegal operations. In response, Binance decided to delist the Nigerian currency from the exchange.

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