Bribery Allegations Against SBF in China Further Complicate Ongoing Legal Case
Sam Bankman-Fried, the embattled founder of FTX, is facing another legal challenge after being hit with a bribery charge. The charge, revealed in a superseding indictment unsealed on Tuesday, alleges that Bankman-Fried transferred about $40 million to Chinese government officials.
The charge comes as part of a broader indictment against Bankman-Fried, which includes allegations of wire fraud, bank fraud, and commodities fraud, among other financial crimes. The new charge adds to the legal woes of Bankman-Fried, who has already been indicted on multiple counts by the Department of Justice.
Bankman-Fried Allegedly Tried Multiple Methods to Unfreeze Funds Before Resorting to Bribery
The legal troubles continue to mount for Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of FTX and Alameda Research, as he faces allegations of bribery in a newly unsealed indictment. According to the indictment, Bankman-Fried turned to bribery to unfreeze funds belonging to Alameda Research that were stuck on Chinese-based cryptocurrency exchanges.
The charges allege that Bankman-Fried paid at least $40 million to Chinese officials to release $1 billion worth of cryptocurrencies held in Alameda trading accounts hosted on some of China’s largest exchanges. The funds were reportedly frozen as part of an investigation into an Alameda counterparty, although neither the exchanges nor the company under investigation were named.
The unsealed indictment against Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX and Alameda Research, sheds new light on his alleged attempts to unfreeze funds belonging to Alameda that were held on Chinese cryptocurrency exchanges. According to prosecutors, Bankman-Fried tried several methods before resorting to bribery, including hiring attorneys to lobby the Chinese government and communicating directly with the exchanges.
The indictment also alleges that he attempted to transfer the frozen funds to new trading accounts under false names in a bid to gain access to them. However, these efforts proved unsuccessful, leading him to allegedly pay at least $40 million in bribes to Chinese officials.
SBF Accused of Directing Transfer of $40 Million in Cryptocurrency to Chinese Officials
The unsealed indictment against Sam Bankman-Fried, founder of FTX and Alameda Research, provides new details on the alleged bribery scheme that he is accused of orchestrating. The indictment states that Bankman-Fried directed the transfer of around $40 million in cryptocurrency to a private wallet in installments.
The funds were intended to benefit one or more Chinese officials, with the goal of inducing them to unfreeze Alameda’s trading accounts on Chinese cryptocurrency exchanges. Coincidentally, the frozen funds were unfrozen around the same time that the transfers were made.