Bahamas Authorities Arrest FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried; May Extradite Him to U.S.

Bahamas Authorities Arrest FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried; May Extradite Him to U.S.

  • Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of FTX, has been arrested and will appear in a Nassau court on Tuesday.
  • Reports state that charges include wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, securities fraud, and securities fraud conspiracy. 
  • The SEC has also filed charges against Bankman-Fried.
  • The Bahamas Prime Minister emphasized that both countries are interested in probing the events surrounding the FTX collapse. 
  • Perpetrators betrayed the public trust and defiled the law as well, the Prime Minister said.
  • Earlier, the US senate invited SBF to its senate hearing scheduled for Dec 14, but he didn’t respond.

The Bahamas authorities have arrested Sam Bankman-Fried and are planning to have him appear in court on Tuesday. The US Attorney of the Southern District of New York (SDNY) Damian Williams, in a Twitter post confirming the arrest, said the Bahamas authorities arrested the FTX founder at the request of the US government after a sealed indictment filed by the SDNY.

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According to a New York Times source, the charges include wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, securities fraud, and securities fraud conspiracy. Further, the US Securities and Exchange Commission has also announced separate charges against Bankman-Fried concerning securities laws violations. The agency plans to publicly file the charges tomorrow in the Southern District of New York.

Reacting to the development, the Prime Minister of The Bahamas, Philip Davis, noted that his country and the US uphold the same interest in ensuring the probing of the circumstances surrounding the collapse of FTX and the individuals involved. 

Davis, however, wants the cooperation of regulator partners in the US to ensure that investigations into the issue are fully carried out.

The Bahamas May Extradite SBF to US

Authorities in the Bahamas expect the US government to seek extradition of the arrested FTX founder. Meanwhile, Davis believes the extradition plan won’t deter the Bahamas from continuing its regulatory and criminal investigations into the issue. According to the Prime minister, the perpetrators not only betrayed the public trust reposed in them but also defiled the law.

Recall that FTX plunged into its prevailing crisis early last month after a leaked balance sheet by Alameda Research revealed that the firm tied up billions of its assets in FTT. Upon this revelation, Binance, a popular crypto exchange, began to liquidate its FTT tokens.

Further, the development made many investors of FTX seek withdrawals of their assets from the exchange, pushing the firm into a state of bankruptcy. 

As the burning impact of the crisis began to spread across the sphere, investigators worldwide found the need to intervene and unravel the mystery surrounding the exchange’s crash. 

In the US, for instance, the senate launched an investigation into FTX and initially invited SBF into its senate hearing scheduled for Dec. 14. He did not respond to the invitation but made it clear via Twitter that he won’t be attending. However, he was supposed to attend his hearing by the US House Committee on Financial Services, but this won’t be possible due to his arrest.

On the Flipside

  • Even though the Bahamas authorities arrested the FTX founder, it’s unclear when they will hand him over to the US.
  • FTX attorneys alleged earlier that the Bahamian authorities were conspiring with Bankman-Fried to transfer FTX assets into crypto wallets controlled by the Bahamian government.

Why You Should Care

It appears that close cooperation between the Bahamas and the U.S. will continue throughout the bankruptcy proceedings following Bankman-Fried’s arrest by Bahamas law enforcement. Additionally, the recent indictment of the FTX founder may encourage the crypto community that yearns for justice.


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