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Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of FTX, has been arrested in The Bahamas

Sam Bankman-Fried, the founder of the collapsed cryptocurrency exchange FTX, has been arrested in The Bahamas, this was announced by the country’s attorney general.

Police said Bankman, 30, was arrested for “financial offences” against laws in the US and The Bahamas.

He is scheduled to appear on Tuesday in a magistrates’ court in the country’s capital, Nassau.

About a month ago FTX filed for bankruptcy in the US, leaving many users unable to access their funds.

According to a recent court filing, FTX owed its largest creditors almost $3.1bn (£2.5bn).

The FTX exchange allowed customers to trade normal money for cryptocurrencies like Bitcoin.

Mr Bankman-Fried was once viewed as a young version of legendary US investor Warren Buffett, and as recently as late October had a net worth estimated at more than $15bn.

Mr Bankman-Fried will be held in custody “pursuant to our nation’s Extradition Act,” the Attorney General of the Bahamas said in a statement.

“Earlier this evening, Bahamian authorities arrested Samuel Bankman-Fried at the request of the US Government, based on a sealed indictment filed by the SDNY [Southern District of New York].

We expect to move to unseal the indictment in the morning and will have more to say at that time,” the US Attorney’s office in Manhattan said in a tweet.

Wall Street regulators also said that they would be taking action against Mr Bankman-Fried.

“We commend our law enforcement partners for working to secure the arrest of Mr Sam Bankman-Fried in the Bahamas on federal criminal charges,” US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) official Gurbir Grewal said in a statement.

“The Securities and Exchange Commission has separately authorised charges relating to Mr Bankman-Fried’s violations of our securities laws, which will be filed publicly tomorrow in the Southern District of New York,” he added.

Fried had been due to testify about the collapse of FTX before the US Congress on Tuesday.

However, due to his arrest, he will now be unable to testify, according to Congresswoman Maxine Waters, who said in a statement that she was surprised to hear that he had been arrested.

Talking to the BBC, Mr Bankman-Fried admitted that mistakes were made at the company, but sought to absolve himself from accusations of illegal activity.

“I didn’t knowingly commit fraud, I don’t think I committed fraud, I didn’t want any of this to happen. I was certainly not nearly as competent as I thought I was,” he told the BBC.


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