by Natario McKenzie (Eyewitness News) NASSAU, BAHAMAS — FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried pleaded not guilty in a Manhattan federal court yesterday to charges that he defrauded investors and illegally diverted a massive amount of customer deposits to his Alameda Research crypto hedge fund for his own personal benefit and to help grow his crypto empire.
Judge Lewis A. Kaplan set a tentative trial date of October 2. Bankman-Fried, 30, has been under house arrest at his parents’ California home on a $250 million bond.
After spending a week on remand at the Bahamas Department of Correctional Services (BDCS) he was extradited to the United States from The Bahamas late last month to face federal charges, including wire fraud, securities fraud, and money laundering, related to the collapse of his crypto exchange, which sank into bankruptcy last November.
Carolyn Ellison, 28, who ran Alameda Research, and Gary Wang, 29, FTX’s co-founder FTX, have already pleaded guilty to fraud charges and are said to be cooperating with prosecutors.
Amid those developments, The Securities Commission of The Bahamas recently again moved to condemn the public statements and court filings made by FTX CEO John J. Ray III, the representative of the U.S. FTX debtors in Chapter 11 proceedings.
In a statement, the commission pointed to public assertions made by Ray challenging its calculations of digital assets it recovered from FTX Digital Markets (FTXDM).