Former Crypto CEO And Major Dem Donor Charged With Attempting To Bribe Chinese Gov’t Officials

(Photo by TIMOTHY A. CLARY/AFP via Getty Images)

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Jason Cohen Contributor
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Federal prosecutors in Manhattan indicted Sam Bankman-Fried (SBF), founder of bankrupt cryptocurrency exchange FTX,  for conspiring to bribe Chinese government officials with $40 million in payments, according to documents released Tuesday morning.

SBF allegedly sent the payment in the form of cryptocurrency and for the purpose of unfreezing accounts that Chinese authorities had frozen. They belonged to his hedge fund, Alameda Research, and contained more than $1 billion of cryptocurrency, according to the documents.

After the bribe payment went through in late 2021, the accounts were confirmed to be unfrozen, and SBF then transferred tens of millions more to finalize the procedure, according to the indictment. SBF allegedly then used the unfrozen cryptocurrency to finance further Alameda trading activity. (RELATED: REPORT: Sam Bankman-Fried Had Deep Ties To Current, Former Regulators, Emails Show)

NEW YORK, NEW YORK – FEBRUARY 09: FTX Founder Sam Bankman-Fried (L) leaves Manhattan Federal Court after a court appearance on February 09, 2023 in New York City. Bankman-Fried is charged with eight criminal counts of fraud, conspiracy, and money-laundering offenses which include making illegal political contributions. (Photo by Michael M. Santiago/Getty Images)

This indictment accuses SBF of attempting to violate the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (FCPA), which prohibits U.S. citizens from bribing foreign government officials for business benefits, according to the Department of Justice.

During the 2022 midterm election cycle, SBF donated almost $39 million to Democrat-aligned causes, making him the second-largest individual donor to them during that period, according to finance watchdog OpenSecrets.

SBF is confined to his parents‘ California residence on a $250 million bond ahead of his trial in October, according to Reuters.

Bankman-Fried’s attorneys did not immediately respond to Daily Caller News Foundation’s request for comment.

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