According to the Royal Bahamas Police Force, Sam Bankman-Fried, the troubled former CEO of cryptocurrency goliath FTX and trading company Alameda Research, was detained on Monday in the Bahamas after federal prosecutors in New York filed criminal allegations contained in a sealed indictment.
According to Damian Williams, the U.S. attorney for the Southern District of New York, the precise allegations are anticipated to be made public on Tuesday.
Williams issued the following statement: “Earlier this evening, Bahamian police detained Samuel Bankman-Fried at the request of the United States government, in accordance with a secret indictment brought by the office of the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York. The indictment is scheduled to be unsealed in the morning, at which point we will have more to say.
According to a source with knowledge of the allegations, Bankman-Fried was charged with multiple counts of fraud one month after FTX announced its $32 billion bankruptcy.
The Bahamas Attorney General’s Office stated that the arrest was “following receipt of formal information from the United States that it has filed criminal charges against SBF and is likely to request his extradition.”
Tomorrow, Sam Bankman-Fried was scheduled to testify in front of the House Financial Services Committee. @HouseGOP was ready to grill him six ways to Sunday.
Now breaking tonight, SBF was just arrested!🧐
Why not allow him to 1st testify tomorrow and answer our many questions?
— Lee Zeldin (@RepLeeZeldin) December 13, 2022
Tuesday morning, Bankman-Fried is scheduled to appear in court in Nassau, Bahamas, before being transferred to New York for prosecution. On Monday night, it remained unclear when his extradition would take place. On Tuesday, he was scheduled to testify before Congress.
Federal prosecutors in the Southern District of New York have been investigating Bankman-Fried since FTX failed, sources told ABC News.
Regarding the arrest, the Southern District declined to comment.
According to a statement from the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission, “additional charges relating to his violations of securities laws, to be filed publicly tomorrow in SDNY,” have been allowed.
The Bahamas and the United States have a common interest in holding accountable all people connected to FTX who may have breached the public trust and broken the law, according to Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis in response to the announcement of the arrest.
“The Bahamas will continue its own regulatory and criminal investigations into the collapse of FTX, with the continued cooperation of its law enforcement and regulatory partners in the United States and elsewhere,” he continued. “While the United States is pursuing criminal charges against SBF individually.
After a rival cryptocurrency exchange said it was abandoning a proposal to acquire it, FTX, formerly a beloved cryptocurrency exchange, filed for bankruptcy protection in November.
In a hearing titled “Investigating the Collapse of FTX, Part 1,” Bankman-Fried was due to testify before the House Financial Services Committee on Tuesday. The committee’s head, Rep. Maxine Waters, expressed her “surprise” at the arrest in a statement late on Monday.
We’re still committed to finding out what happened, and the committee is eager to start its investigation by hearing from Mr. John Ray III tomorrow, she continued, “though I’m unhappy that we won’t be able to hear from Mr. Bankman-Fried tomorrow.
The testimony of John Ray, the new CEO of FTX who is leading the business through bankruptcy procedures, is still anticipated.
After originally refusing the committee’s request to speak, Bankman-Fried later stated in a series of tweets that he is “ready to testify.”
“I still can’t access a lot of my data, either personal or professional. So I won’t be as helpful as I’d like, and there are limits to what I can say,” Bankman-Fried added. But I’m willing to give a testimony on March 13 because the committee still believes it would be helpful.
In an interview with ABC News’ George Stephanopoulos, Bankman-Fried refuted claims that he was aware of “any inappropriate use of consumer monies.”