Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX and Alameda Research, is currently standing trial for seven fraud charges related to his attempts to recover $1 billion in assets frozen on Huobi and OKX crypto exchanges. The assets were frozen due to a Chinese money laundering investigation involving an Alameda counterparty, according to court testimony given on Wednesday.
Caroline Ellison, the former head of Alameda Research and intermittent romantic partner of Bankman-Fried, revealed these details during her court testimony. Following unsuccessful negotiations with the Chinese government, Alameda reportedly adopted trading strategies that involved imbalanced trades between accounts. These accounts were created using Thai prostitutes’ IDs with the intention that the main account would lose money.
Initially, Bankman-Fried rejected a suggestion to bribe a Chinese official. However, he later agreed to it. According to Ellison’s testimony, a bribe from Alameda resulted in the unlocking of the accounts.
The former FTX CEO is also scheduled for a second trial in March 2023 where he will face five additional charges. These include an alleged violation of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act through bribery. Despite the charges against him, Bankman-Fried maintains his plea of not guilty.
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