News - FTX sues Sam Bankman-Fried for billions in refunds

By Ted Maas

FTX sues Sam Bankman-Fried for billions in refunds

New twists in the FTX case: now the insolvent crypto exchange itself is suing former chief executive Sam Bankman-Fried - for a billion US dollars.

Yesterday, Thursday, July 20, the insolvent crypto exchange FTX filed a lawsuit in a Delaware court against its former boss and founder Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF) and others who belonged to its management, Reuters reported.

FTX Trading's claims total more than one billion US dollars, which Bankman-Fried allegedly embezzled along with Caroline Ellison, the head of his hedge fund Alameda Research, former chief technology officer Zixiao "Gary" Wang and Nishad Singh, the CTO. The defendants allegedly used the embezzled money for luxury housing, political donations and private investments from February 2020 to November 2022, calling it "one of the biggest financial frauds of all time". A spokesman for Bankman-Fried declined to comment to Reuters, while the other suspects did not respond to requests for comment, the reports said.

Since FTX filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the company has been led by former Enron bankruptcy trustee John Ray. While Bankman-Fried repeatedly says he is innocent, defendants Ellison, Wang and Singh have pleaded guilty and are cooperating with prosecutors. The charges now filed state that more than US$725 million worth of shares were transferred through FTX and Bankman-Fried's controlled company West Realm Shires without any consideration.

Another US$546 million was allegedly embezzled by Bankman-Fried and Wang to buy Robinhood stock. Ellison, meanwhile, embezzled nearly US$29 million to pay himself bonuses. A "donatie" of US$10 million that Bankman-Fried received from his father to fund his criminal defense is also part of the indictment.

All of the above transfers were made when FTX and its subsidiaries were already insolvent, FTX-Trading said.

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