A group of American politicians has appealed to President Biden and the hostage affairs unit to intervene in the case of Tigran Gambaryan, an executive of Binance who is currently detained by Nigerian authorities on charges of money laundering and tax evasion.

In a letter sent on June 4 to President Biden, Secretary Anthony Blinken, and Presidential Envoy for Hostage Affairs Roger D. Carstens, the politicians expressed their concern that Gambaryan is being unlawfully held by the Nigerian government. They urged immediate action to prevent the situation from deteriorating further.

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The letter was signed by 12 members of Congress, including Rich McCormic, Michael McCaul, Barry Loudermilk, Earl L Buddy Carter, Austin Scot, Randy K Weber Sr, Bill Huizenga, Aumua Amata Coleman, Ann Wagner, Keith Self, Thomas H Kein Jr, and French Hill.

The politicians argued that the charges against Gambaryan, including money laundering and tax evasion, are unfounded and that Nigerian authorities are using them as a means to extort Binance.

They also raised concerns about Gambaryan’s declining health, noting that as a U.S. citizen, he has tested positive for malaria but has not received adequate treatment.

Furthermore, the politicians highlighted the harsh treatment Gambaryan has endured while in detention.

They pointed out that he is not allowed to meet with his legal team without the presence of government officials and armed guards.

The letter also addressed the conditions of the prison where Gambaryan is being held, specifically the Kuje prison, known for its harsh environment and previous housing of ISIS combatants.

Signed by predominantly House members, the letter was addressed to the U.S. president, the secretary of state, and the special presidential envoy for hostage affairs.

Tigran Gambaryan, who serves as Binance’s head of financial crime compliance, traveled to Nigeria on February 26 in response to an invitation from the Nigerian government to address compliance issues.

However, he was detained after meetings with Nigerian authorities and had his passport confiscated.

On May 18, Gambaryan was denied bail, and four days later, he failed to appear in a scheduled court hearing, leaving his defense team and prosecutors unaware of his whereabouts.

When he finally appeared in court the next day, his physical condition was visibly deteriorated, prompting the judge to order his transfer to a private hospital for medical attention.

Gambaryan’s colleague, Nardeem Anjarwalla, who was previously detained with him, managed to escape to Kenya using a second passport.

The Nigerian government, in collaboration with INTERPOL, has been actively searching for Anjarwalla to facilitate his extradition to Nigeria to face charges.