EXCLUSIVE: Sam Bankman-Fried Arrested in the Bahamas
Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been arrested in the Bahamas, the island's Attorney General's Office stated on Monday.
The arrest “followed an official notification from the United States that they have filed criminal charges against Sam Bankman-Fried and will likely seek his extradition”, according to the authorities.
In a statement, U.S. Attorney Damien Williams said:
“Earlier this evening, Bahamian authorities arrested Sam Bankman-Fried at the request of the United States Government on the basis of a sealed indictment filed by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of New York. We expect to file a motion to unseal the indictment in the morning and will have more information then.”
Responding to the announcement of the arrest, Bahamas Prime Minister Philip Davis said, “The Bahamas and the United States have a shared interest in bringing to justice all people associated with FTX who may have betrayed the public trust and violated the law.”
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.
— US Attorney SDNY (@SDNYnews) December 12, 2022
FTX, the crypto exchange that was at one time worth $32 billion, filed for bankruptcy in November after rival cryptocurrency exchange Binance announced it was abandoning the plan to acquire it.
Bankman-Fried was expected to appear before Congress on Tuesday to testify before the House of Representatives’ Financial Services Committee in a hearing titled “Investigation of the FTX Failure, Part 1.” John Ray, the new FTX CEO who is leading the company through the bankruptcy proceedings, will also testify.
In a series of tweets, Bankman-Fried said he was “ready to testify” after initially opposing the committee’s request.