Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of FTX Trading and Almeda Research, has finally been arrested under criminal charges filed by the US. He was arrested in the Bahamas by the Bahamian authorities on Monday evening, just before the day when he was scheduled to appear in front of the House Financial Services Committee. Bahamian authorities acted after receiving an indictment from the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York. As a part of this, Sam Bankman-Fried will be extradited to the US soon for further legal actions. This marks the first action from US lawmakers to address the sudden downfall of FTX Trading.
Sam Bankman-Fried has made several surprising decisions since the downfall of his companies, FTX Trading and Almeda Research, which resulted in a reduction of his fortune from multi-billion dollars to almost nothing. Although such events have been common things in the crypto market, this downfall was almost surprising and baffling at the same time. This is because FTX Trading was one of the well-known names in the crypto market, which generally handled cryptocurrency exchange and crypto hedge funds. Since these events, Sam Bankman-Fried initially was silent and denied making any statement related to these events. But later, Bankman-Fried made several tweets on his Twitter to address the events and to explain to the public what happened. Based on these tweets, it initially seemed as if he had no involvement whatsoever. But as the events unfolded and more parties came forward to make their statements, more and more fingers started to point in the direction of the FTX founder. FTX management talked about how Bankman-Fried used to spend his company’s wealth on business parties and Hawaii tours. Bankman-Fried also refused the Congress’ invitation to address their questions, which he suddenly accepted on Friday, December 9. He was scheduled to appear in front of the House Financial Services Committee, virtually. But later, Bankman-Fried’s attorney revealed that he will not be appearing in front of congress due to some reasons. After he accepted the invitation from Congress, it was said that he is accepting the invitation due to the fear of a subpoena. And it seems like his fears have come true with his arrest.
Damian Williams, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of New York, announced on Twitter that the criminal charges against Sam Bankman-Fried included charges against wire fraud, wire fraud conspiracy, securities fraud, securities fraud conspiracy, and money laundering. The Security Exchange Commission also stepped in to add more problems for Sam Bankman-Fried with the charges against violations of SEC securities laws. SEC has said that it will be filing the charges tomorrow in the Southern District of New York. Bahamian Prime Minister Philip Davis also commented on the event saying that the US and Bahamas, both share the same views on holding individuals accountable who caused the demise of FTX Trading. He also said that along with the US, the Bahamas will also conduct regulatory and criminal investigations against Bankman-Fried while actively cooperating with the US law enforcement and regulatory partners.