More than $700m in assets of FTX founder seized by US government
55 million shares in Robinhood stock valued at $526 million are discovered to be part of the seized assets.
Almost $700 million were seized by the US government from assets belonging to cryptocurrency firm FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried, according to court filings that also show more than 55 million shares in Robinhood stock valued at $526 million.
Three out of the nine accounts tied to Bankman-Fried did not have their values revealed, and the remaining six had a total value of over $697 million. However, it still remains unknown how much money clients have lost.
According to FTX lawyer Andy Dietderich on January 13, the newly-located assets do not include assets confiscated by the Securities Commission of the Bahamas, where FTX was headquartered and where Bankman-Fried resided at the time of his detention, and also where he was extradited from to reach the US.
FTX, one of the world's largest cryptocurrency exchanges, was founded by Bankman-Fried in 2019 and filed for bankruptcy in November. An MIT graduate, he is charged with two counts of wire fraud and six counts of conspiracy, including conspiracy to launder money and commit campaign finance violations. If convicted, he may face up to 115 years in prison.
Prosecutors have described the case as one of the biggest financial fraud cases in US history, arguing that FTX violated campaign finance laws and schemed to misappropriate customer funds.
The charges indicate a scheme to misappropriate the deposits of FTX customers to pay Bankman-Fried's debts in private research and trading firm Alameda from 2019, until FTX collapsed last month.
Out of the eight charges, five of them hold a maximum prison sentence of 20 years - each. Bankman-Fried was one of the stars of the crypto field, drawing comparisons to investment magnate Warren Buffett.
The former FTX CEO tried to organize a bailout but failed - this left FTX struggling to raise billions of dollars and many customers unable to retain their money.