Sam Bankman-Fried paid a $40 million bribe to a Chinese government official, according to the indictment
Sam Bankman-Fried paid $40 million in bribes to a Chinese government official to release $1 billion worth of cryptocurrency, a new indictment says
- Federal prosecutors are charging Sam Bankman-Fried, 31, with bribing at least one Chinese government official
- An indictment claims he ordered a $40 million payment in cryptocurrency to unfreeze accounts at his hedge fund Alameda Research
- SBF has previously pleaded not guilty to defrauding investors
Sam Bankman-Fried paid at least one Chinese government official a $40 million bribe to release $1 billion worth of cryptocurrencies, a new indictment alleges today.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan on Tuesday accused Bankman-Fried of directing the cryptocurrency payment to unblock accounts at his hedge fund Alameda Research that Chinese authorities had frozen in November 2021. The accounts contained more than $1 billion in cryptocurrency, prosecutors said.
Once those assets were released, the indictment said, Bankman-Fried authorized another transfer of tens of millions of dollars in additional cryptocurrency to complete the bribery.
The 13 new international bribery allegations add pressure on the 31-year-old former billionaire, who previously pleaded not guilty to eight counts of defrauding investors by using their money to offset losses for Alameda.
Sam Bankman-Fried, 31, faces new charges of bribing a Chinese government official
He previously pleaded not guilty to defrauding investors in the collapse of FTX
According to the new indictment, in November 2021, Bankman-Fried and his associates tried “numerous methods” to unfreeze the accounts.
But after both legal and personal efforts failed, Bankman-Fried agreed and directed the multimillion-dollar bribe “intended for the benefit of one or more Chinese government officials to influence and induce them” to release the accounts .
He then allegedly used the money to fund Alameda’s failed deals and was able to defraud customers and investors for another year before the cryptocurrency exchange imploded.
SBF was eventually forced to declare FTX bankrupt in November 2022 as concerns about lack of funds prompted a bank run.
He now faces state and civil charges from the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission.
And with this new indictment, he also faces 13 violations of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, which makes it illegal for US citizens to bribe foreign government officials to conduct business.
US District Judge Lewis Kaplan has scheduled a court hearing for Thursday after prosecutors requested that Bankman-Fried be tried on the new charges.
Bankman-Fried has previously denied knowingly committing fraud, instead blaming sloppy bookkeeping and poor oversight.
DailyMail.com has reached out to its lawyers for comment.
China’s Foreign Ministry was not immediately available outside of normal business hours in Beijing.
Bankman Fried’s FTX cryptocurrency exchange collapsed in November 2021
The new indictment comes just a month after federal prosecutors accused Bankman-Fried of orchestrating an illegal campaign fundraising scheme to buy influence in Washington, DC. He has not yet been charged with the new charges.
But the alleged scammer pleaded not guilty in January to criminal charges of defrauding investors in his crypto exchange out of $1.8 billion.
He is now being held on $250 million bail at his parents’ home in Palo Alto, California, ahead of his Oct. 2 trial.
On Monday, his attorneys and prosecutors reached a new settlement over bail terms after Kaplan promised to send Bankman-Fried to jail pending trial.
This came after prosecutors raised concerns that he may have tampered with witnesses.
https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-11911659/Sam-Bankman-Fried-paid-40m-bribe-Chinese-government-official-indictment-alleges.html?ns_mchannel=rss&ns_campaign=1490&ito=1490 Sam Bankman-Fried paid a $40 million bribe to a Chinese government official, according to the indictment