Cryptocurrency tycoon Sam Bankman-Fried extradited to US from The Bahamas – Sky News
Sam Bankman-Fried has been extradited to the US from The Bahamas as he faces criminal charges relating to the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX.
Authorities in the Bahamas said the FTX founder had waived his right to challenge the extradition and Bankman-Fried was witnessed leaving a magistrate court in Nasssau in a dark SUV.
According to Reuters, a plane carrying the former chief executive departed the Bahamas from a private airfield by Nassau’s airport.
Bankman-Fried is due to land at Westchester County Airport in New York and will likely appear in front of a US judge later on Thursday.
It comes after two of his associates pleaded guilty to criminal charges related to the FTX collapse.
Carolyn Ellison, former chief executive of Alameda Research – a trading firm started by Bankman-Fried – and Gary Wang, who co-founded FTX, pleaded guilty to charged “related to their role sin the fraud that contributed to FTX’s collapse”, US Attorney Damian Williams said.
Bankman-Fried had earlier decided to agree to extradition in part out of a “desire to make the relevant customers whole”, according to the affidavit, which is dated 20 December.
His lawyer told the judge that his client was “anxious to leave”.
The hearing was adjourned after the statements.
Federal prosecutors in Manhattan last week charged the cryptocurrency mogul with stealing billions of dollars in FTX customer assets to plug losses at his hedge fund, Alameda Research, in what US Attorney Damian Williams called “one of the biggest financial frauds in American history”.
Bankman-Fried was arrested on a US extradition request last week in The Bahamas, where he lives and FTX is based.
He initially said he would contest extradition, but it was reported over the weekend that he would reverse that decision.
Bankman-Fried has acknowledged risk-management failures at FTX but said he does not believe he has criminal liability.
His personal wealth is thought to have swelled to $20bn (£16.2bn) at the exchange’s peak, but has since reportedly shrunk to $100,000 (£83,000).
Wednesday’s hearing followed a confusing sequence of events …….