Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX, is detained in the Bahamas

December 13, 2022

By Murtuza Merchant

The disgraced former CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, has been detained in the Bahamas, the Royal Bahamas Police Force has said.

Following “receipt of formal notification from the United States that it has filed criminal charges against SBF and is likely to request his extradition,” a statement read. Bankman-Fried, also known as SBF, was detained.

In a statement distributed over Twitter, the US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York acknowledged receipt of the request.

USA Damian Williams: Earlier this evening, Bahamian authorities arrested Samuel Bankman-Fried at the request of the U.S. Government, based on a sealed indictment filed by the SDNY. We expect to move to unseal the indictment in the morning and will have more to say at that time.

Bankman-Fried was imprisoned without a hitch at his Albany apartment complex at 6 o’clock in the evening, according to a statement from the Bahamas Police. According to the statement, SBF was detained as a result of “several financial offences against laws of the United States, which are also offences against laws of the Commonwealth of The Bahamas.”

Bankman-Fried had agreed to appear before a House Financial Services Committee but had turned down an invitation from the Senate, so he was scheduled to address lawmakers about the demise of the digital asset exchange in Washington, D.C., tomorrow.

Although the specific accusations that the US government intends to press against Bankman-Fried are unknown, legal professionals tell Decrypt that they are most likely to involve a combination of bank and wire fraud. The Bahamas and the US have an extradition agreement.

After reportedly transferring money from the exchange to its trading house, Alameda Research—which was also started by SBF—FTX declared bankruptcy last month.

Users of the exchange attempted to withdraw money from FTX when they learned about the mismanagement, which caused a bank run on the exchange. After being compelled to acknowledge that it did not have reserves of client assets equal to one to one, FTX later filed for bankruptcy.

About the author

Murtuza Merchant is a senior journalist and an avid follower of blockchain, cryptocurrencies and NFTs.

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