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