Home News Samuel Bankman-Fried, deposed prince of cryptocurrencies, arrested in the Bahamas

Samuel Bankman-Fried, deposed prince of cryptocurrencies, arrested in the Bahamas

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Sam Bankman-Fried, the fallen star of cryptocurrencies and former boss of the FTX platform, will be presented this Tuesday, December 13 in court in the Bahamas, the day after his arrest in the archipelago at the request of the American authorities. “We should file the arraignment in the morning and we will have more information to give at that time”announced Damian Williams, a New York prosecutor, in a tweet, without further details on the nature of the charges.

“SBF” chained media appearances for a month, despite the risk of trial for fraud after the spectacular implosion of the company, valued at 32 billion dollars at the start of the year. The United States has “complained” against the 30-year-old, who resides in the Bahamas, and “will probably seek his extradition”Bahamas Attorney General Ryan Pinder said in a statement posted on Twitter. “SBF” will appear this Tuesday in a court in the capital, Nassau.

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FTX bankruptcy: 10 things to know about Sam Bankman-Fried, fallen prince of cryptos

“He could spend the rest of his life in prison”

The two countries “have an interest in holding accountable individuals associated with FTX who may have betrayed the public trust and broken the law”, said Philip Davis, the Prime Minister of the archipelago located in the northeast of Cuba. The Bahamas will conduct their own “criminal investigation into the collapse of FTX”he added.

In the USA, “if convicted of fraud, he could spend the rest of his life in prison, given the amount”believes Jacob Frenkel, of Dickinson Wright. ‘There wouldn’t be an indictment if prosecutors weren’t absolutely confident that they’re going to get a conviction’added this specialist in federal investigations, who worked for the American stock market policeman (SEC).

Sam Bankman-Fried was supposed to speak on Tuesday before a parliamentary committee of the House of Representatives, just like John Ray, the new boss of FTX. The ex-leaders of the bankrupt platform have shown a “complete failure” at all levels of control, spending without really counting the money of their customers, said Monday John Ray, in a document published on the eve of the hearing in Congress.

“The collapse of the FTX group appears to be the result of the absolute concentration of control in the hands of a very small group of grossly inexperienced and unsophisticated individuals who have not implemented any of the systems or controls required for a company in which other people’s money or assets are entrusted”.FTX, the tales of crypto

Considered one of the world’s leading cryptocurrency exchanges, FTX was suddenly unable to return the money they had deposited there to its customers in early November. The group announced its bankruptcy filing on November 11. “I never tried to scam anyone”assured Sam Bankman-Fried at the end of November during a conference organized by the “New York Times”. “I clearly made a lot of mistakes and I would give anything to be able to do some things again. »

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“Criminal behavior”

The former muse of cryptos has chosen to multiply interviews and speeches on Twitter, despite the seriousness of the accusations against him. A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, the son of law professors at Stanford University, he had managed to legitimize cryptocurrencies with the general public and the political class. But his contrite air and his hesitant tone during his recent speeches offer a striking contrast to the reassuring image he has forged for himself in recent years.

“It was a very risky strategy”, notes Jacob Frenkel. In the end, it’s “as if he had admitted that he behaved in a criminal way”.

The investigation has already shown that the assets deposited by clients on FTX were mixed with those of the brokerage and crypto investments company Alameda, also founded by Sam Bankman-Fried. And Alameda gleefully dipped into FTX client funds to make risky bets. Such use of these funds would constitute fraud if it flouted the terms of the agreement between FTX and its clients, believe many lawyers.

FTX has also embarked on a “spending spree” from the end of 2021, with 5 billion dollars in companies and investments “which may only be worth one serving” of that, according to John Ray. The platform has also disbursed, in loans or payments, more than a billion dollars intended for people within the company.

For the new leader, who has overseen several bankruptcy procedures, including that of the former American energy giant Enron, the objective is now to “maximizing value” assets still held by FTX to repay the group’s customers and creditors as much as possible.

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