Federal prosecutors in the Southern District New York have charged Samuel Bankman-Fried, former CEO and co-founder of cryptocurrency trading platform FTX, with eight counts of conspiracy and fraud, according to an indictment that was unsealed Tuesday morning.
The charges include conspiracy to commit wire fraud on customers, wire fraud on customer, conspiracy to commit wire fraud on lenders, wire fraud on lenders, conspiracy to commit commodities fraud, conspiracy to commit securities fraud, conspiracy to commit money laundering, and conspiracy to defraud the United States and violate the campaign finance laws.
The indictment is not heavy on specifics, but it does make out several allegations, including that Bankman-Fried carried out a scheme to defraud FTX customers by using their deposited funds “to pay expenses and debts of Alameda Research,” Bankman-Fried’s crypto hedge fund, and defrauded Alameda’s lenders by providing “false and misleading information” to them about Alameda’s financial condition.
Prosecutors also allege that Bankman-Fried provided “false and misleading information” about FTX’s financial condition to FTX investors, including by “caus[ing]an email to be sent to an FTX investor in New York, New York that contained materially false information about FTX’s financial condition.”
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The indictment also alleges that Bankman-Fried and others made “contributions to candidates for federal office, joint fundraising committees, and independent expenditure committees in the names of other people, totaling at least $25,000 in one year, and also made contributions from a corporation to candidates for federal office and joint fundraising committees totaling at least $25,000 in a year.”
In addition to any penalty for the offenses themselves, prosecutors are seeking forfeiture of “any and all property, real and personal, that constitutes or is derived from proceeds traceable to the commission of said offenses[.]”
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The indictment’s unsealing follows Bankman-Fried’s arrest in the Bahamas, as well as a separate case brought against him by the Securities and Exchange Commission, and another case being brought by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission. The indictment was originally filed under seal on Dec. 9.
According to SDNY administration, there is “no timing, as of yet” for Bankman-Fried’s extradition to the United States.
Fox News’s Marta Dhanis and David Spunt contributed to this report.
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