FTX Facing Criminal Probe By Bahamas Authorities, But Musk Counters There Will Be “No Investigation” Of “Major Democrat Donor” SBF
Amid growing speculation of his whereabouts, Bloomberg reports that Sam Bankman-Fried was interviewed by Bahamian police and regulators on Saturday, although Bloomberg was quick to add that in the Bahamas, law-enforcement inquiries don’t necessarily mean someone will be arrested or charged with a crime.
In a separate report, Bloomberg also notes that the Bahamian police said they’re working with the Bahamas Securities Commission to investigate whether there was any criminal misconduct in the collapse of the crypto exchange FTX (narrator: there was).
“In light of the collapse of FTX globally and the provisional liquidation of FTX Digital Markets Ltd., a team of financial investigators from the Financial Crimes Investigation Branch are working closely with the Bahamas Securities Commission to investigate if any criminal misconduct occurred,” a police spokesperson said in a statement Sunday.
Separately, CoinTelegraph adds that in addition to SBF, the low profile FTX co-founder Gary Wang and director of engineering Nishad Singh are also said to be in the Bahamas and are “under supervision” by the local authorities. A source familiar with the matter told Cointelegraph that the three former FTX executives, as well as Alameda Research CEO Caroline Ellison, are looking for ways to flee to Dubai. While the plan was made assuming that the United States “doesn’t have any extradition treaties” with the UAE, the nations signed a mutual legal assistance treaty (MLAT) back on Feb. 24, 2022, to work against criminals.
“Right now three of them, Sam, Gary, and Nishad are under supervision in the Bahamas, which means it will be hard for them to leave,” said the CT source, who asked to remain anonymous. The source has also revealed that Ellison is currently in Hong Kong, adding that means “she might be able to get to Dubai.” However, community member coinbureau cited his source in the U.S. government to confirm that FTX members attempting to reach Dubai will get detained at the airport and sent straight back to the United States.
A similar theory was discussed as part of a 16-hour-long Twitter Space by The Crypto Roundtable Show host Mario Nawfal, with a guest speaker claiming “trusted sources” have witnessed Bankman-Fried “in a locked space” with authorities in Albany Tower — a luxury resort located in New Providence in The Bahamas. An unverified rumor also suggests that Bankman-Fried is currently joined by his father, Joseph Bankman.
Rumors that Bankman-Fried had been arrested on the tarmac at The Bahamas Airport made the rounds on Nov. 10 with evidence suggesting that Bankman-Fried’s private jet had been grounded for 40 minutes while on the way to Miami from Nassau.
On Nov. 12, rumors then pointed to Bankman-Fried having landed in Buenos Aires in the early hours of the day after Twitter users tracked the coordinates of his private jet using the flight tracking website ADS-B Exchange.
Later in the day, Bankman-Fried in a text message to Reuters denied speculation that he had fled to Argentina, claiming that he was still in The Bahamas.
The former FTX CEO is at the center of one of the industry’s biggest scandals: the Department of Financial Protection and Innovation (DFPI) in the state of California announced on Nov. 10 that it will open up an investigation as to the “apparent failure” of the exchange. Bloomberg and WSJ have reported that SBF is also dealing scrutiny from the Securities and Exchange Commission over whether he broke securities rules.
On Saturday, the WSJ reported that there was a video conference in which Alameda Research head, Caroline Ellison admitted that she, Bankman-Fried and two other FTX executives, Nishad Singh and Gary Wang, were aware of the decision to send customer funds to Alameda, effectively making the prosecution’s case a slam dunk.
But maybe not: in his latest jab at the corrupt US system, Elon Musk – who is now a bigger non-grata persona with the US left than even Donald Trump – tweeted that Sam Bankman Fried was a major Democrat donor, “so no investigation.”
SBF was a major Dem donor, so no investigation
— Elon Musk (@elonmusk) November 13, 2022
As a reminder, SBF was the #2 Dem donor after Soros…
… which is to say that Musk is not wrong.
If only there were signs… pic.twitter.com/J9Z9ZC35Zs
— zerohedge (@zerohedge) November 12, 2022