Sam Bankman-Fried, founder and former CEO of FTX, was denied bail after a judge ruled his flight to the US was a “significant risk.” An extradition hearing is scheduled for February 8.
A Bahamian judge has denied the FTX founder’s bail hours after US prosecutors accused him of misappropriating billions of dollars in what has been described as one of the biggest financial frauds in the United States.
More information: Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX, was arrested in the Bahamas
In an indictment, prosecutors for the Department of Justice for the Southern District of New York Bankman-Fried assigned eight counts of fraudincluding misappropriating investor deposits and violating US financial law. Last Tuesday (Dec 13), Bankman-Fried appeared in court in the Bahamas in his first public appearance since the FTX collapse. in November.
Lawyers for Sam Bankman-Fried attempted to post $250,000 bail, but the judge said the defendant’s flight risk was too high and ordered him sent to a correctional facility in the Bahamas before extradition in February.
Attorney Damian Williams in New York said the investigation was ongoing and moving quickly. “While this is our first public announcement, it won’t be our last,” he said.
Williams described the exchange’s collapse as one of the “greatest financial frauds in American history,” but declined to say whether prosecutors would bring charges against other FTX executives or whether any FTX members were cooperating with the investigation.
Bankman-Fried apologized to clients and acknowledged supervisory failures at FTX but, according to ReutersHe said he does not believe he bears any criminal responsibility. He faces up to 115 years in prison if he is convicted on all eight counts.
Both the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) also filed suit on Tuesday. The CFTC sued Bankman-Fried, as well as Alameda and FTX, alleging fraud involving digital commodity assets.
At the hearing, lawmakers largely agreed that the FTX collapse justified further regulation of cryptocurrencies. But with little time left until the end of the year, the committee would not resume negotiations until January.
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