Feds are launching an FTX task force to recover victim assets and resume searches as Bankman-Fried claims not remorseful
January 5, 2023: -On Monday, the Manhattan U.S. Attorney’s Office said it had made an FTX Task Force to trace and overcome assets of victims of the cryptocurrency exchange company’s collapse and to handle investigations and prosecutions related to the firm and other entities.
The announcement is coming as FTX founder and former CEO Sam Bankman-Fried appear in U.S. District Court in Manhattan not being able in the criminal case, where he is alleged with multiple counts of economic fraud and campaign finance scenes.
“The Southern District of New York works around the clock responding to the implosion of FTX,” Manhattan U.S. Attorney Damian Williams stated.
“It is an all-hands-on-deck moment,” Williams stated.
“We launch the SDNY FTX Task Force to ensure that this urgent work continues, which is powered by all of SDNY’s sources and expertise until justice is done,” he stated.
Williams’ top deputy, Andrea Griswold, leads the task force, which choice draws prosecutors from the Securities and Commodities Fraud, Public Corruption, and Money which launders and Transnational Criminal Enterprises units.
The Securities and Exchange Commission estimated that customers lost over $8 billion due to fraud at FTX and Bankman-Fried’s hedge fund, Alameda Research.
When FTX complained about Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in November, it claimed to have over 100,000 creditors and liabilities of between $10 billion and $50 billion, with assets in an identical range.
The 30-year-old Bankman-Fried is being free but under house arrest at his parent’s residence on a $250 million personal recognizance bond set after he was deported from the Bahamas late last month.
Two of his lieutenants claimed guilty in Manhattan federal court to many counts of fraud before he was deported: Caroline Ellison, the 28-year-old ex-CEO of Alameda, and FTX owner Gary Wang, 29.
Ellison and Wang are cooperating to investigate Bankman-Fried and related FTX matters.
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