The founder and former CEO of cryptocurrency exchange FTX, Samuel Bankman-Fried has been charged with several financial crimes by the U.S. goverment.
He was alleged to have deliberately deceived and defraud customers and investors to enrich himself and others.
Prosecutors said Bankman-Fried devised “a scheme and artifice to defraud” FTX’s customers and investors since the year 2019, when he founded his company.
He was said to have illegally diverted their money to cover expenses, debts and risky trades at the crypto hedge fund he started in 2017, Alameda Research.
Bankman-Fried allegedly spent lavishly on real estate, made large political donations among others with customers money.
The 30-year-old was arrested on Monday in the Bahamas by the U.S. government for comitting “one of the biggest frauds in American history,”. He remains in custody after being denied bail.
The FTX founder has been charged with eight criminal violations, ranging from wire fraud to money laundering to conspiracy to commit fraud.
If found guilty of all the charges, Bankman-Fried could spend years in jail.
His company, FTX filed for bankruptcy on Nov. 11, when it ran out of money after the cryptocurrency equivalent of a bank run.