Sam-Bankman Fried Finally Arrested in Bahamas, to be Extradited to U.S.

Quick Summary

  • Ex-CEO of FTX, Sam Bankman-Fried, has been arrested in the Bahamas.
  • The US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York has requested extradition for Bankman-Fried.
  • The US Attorney’s Office and the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) have filed criminal charges against Bankman-Fried.
  • The indictment is currently sealed, but is expected to be unsealed in the morning.

Royal Bahamas Police Force Arrests Sam Bankman-Fried

Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF), the former CEO of FTX, was arrested in the Bahamas on the evening of December 12th, 2022. According to a statement from the Bahamas Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs, Ryan Pinder, SBF was arrested following “receipt of formal notification from the United States that it has filed criminal charges against SBF and is likely to request his extradition.”

Statement from the Office of the Attorney General & Ministry of Legal Affairs (Source: Bahamas Press)

Director of Communication at the Office of Prime Minister Bahamas, Latrae L. Rahming, posted an image on Twitter of a statement from the Royal Bahamas Police Force on the arrest of SBF. He was arrested after 6 p.m. at his apartment complex in the Albany Resort, and is taken into custody without incident. SBF is scheduled to appear on Tuesday in Nassau’s Magistrate Court.

US Attorney’s Office Confirms Request for Sam Bankman-Fried’s Arrest

The US Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York confirmed the request for his arrest in a statement via Twitter. They expect to move to unseal the indictment in the morning. Until then, more information will be available soon.

Sam Bankman-Fried’s Criminal Charges

According to the New York Times, the criminal charges SBF is facing included “wire fraud, securities fraud, money laundering, and several related criminal conspiracies”, which are also offences against laws of the Commonwealth of the Bahamas.

Furthermore, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) had also issued a statement authorizing charges relating to SBF’s violations of their securities laws, which will be filed publicly tomorrow in the Southern District of New York.

Before the arrest, SBF was supposed to testify remotely about the FTX collapse in a hearing in front of the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday. It is unclear whether the hearing would still take place. However, there have apparently been leaks of the full transcript of his testimony.

Here is a full list of the charges against SBF:

By the Southern District of New York:

  • Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud on Customers;
  • Wire Fraud on Customers;
  • Conspiracy to Commit Wire Fraud on Lenders;
  • Wire Fraud on Lenders;
  • Conspiracy to Commit Securities Fraud;
  • Conspiracy to Commit Commodities Fraud;
  • Conspiracy to Commit Money Laundering; and
  • Conspiracy to Defraud the United States and Violate the Campaign Finance Laws.

By the Securities and Exchange Commission:

  • Fraud in Connection with the Purchase or Sale of Securities; and
  • Fraud in the Offer or Sale of Securities.

By the Commodity Futures Trading Commission:

  • Fraud; and
  • Fraudulent Misstatements and Omissions.

SBF denied bail

The Bahaman courts have denied SBF bail. Originally, SBF’s lawyers requested he is released on US$250,000 bail, citing that he requires regular medication. Meanwhile, prosecutors in the Bahamas argued that based on the treaty between the Bahamas and the US, defendants are required to be in custody pending extradition hearings.

SBF will continue to be held in custody pending his extradition hearing on 8th February 2023.

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Ronal is a Senior China Blockchain Correspondant who has been covering the Chinese blockchain industry since its inception. He has written extensively on the subject, and his work has been featured in some of the world’s leading publications. Ronal is an expert on the Chinese blockchain market and has a deep understanding of the technology and its potential applications.