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Sam Bankman-Fried on $250 million bail, ordered to live with parents

Sam Bankman-Fried: The founder of FTX could be released on a $250 million bond, according to a ruling made by a federal judge in New York on Thursday.

He is awaiting his trial on the charges of fraud and other offenses.

The news

Sam Bankman-Fried, his parents, attorney, and court security left the Manhattan US District Court around 2:00 p.m.

The prosecutors and his attorneys accepted the bail conditions for Bankman-personal Fried’s recognizance.

So, on January 3 in New York City, Judge Ronnie Abrams will preside over the 30-year-old’s subsequent hearing.

He will be charged there and enter a plea.


A recognizance bond is a written promise from the accused to appear in court upon a summons.

Sam Bankman-Fried won’t be required to complete all of the bail’s collateral requirements upon release.

The bond, guaranteed by the equity in his family’s home, was signed by his parents and two other parties with substantial assets.

The prosecution describes the $250 million package, which also includes an electronic monitoring bracelet, as the largest pretrial bond in history.

The Northern District of California and the Southern & Eastern Districts of New York must be avoided, and he must also agree to receive mental health therapy.

Read also: FTX collaborators charged, both plead guilty

In the court

Judge Gabriel Gorenstein stated that after being released to his parents’ California home, Bankman-Fried would require constant supervision.

The courtroom was attended by SBF’s parents, both Stanford law professors.

On either side of the FTX founder, two US marshals in blue suits and brown shoes stood.

He switched his ankle shackles for an ankle monitor while in the courtroom.

He only spoke when the judge asked Sam Bankman-Fried if he understood the repercussions of breaking the bail agreement.

“Yes, I do,” said SBF.

Bankman-Fried is also prohibited from opening new credit accounts valued at more than $1,000.

Federal regulators dub him a “brazen” fraud at his crypt empire while awaiting the trial.

SBF was at the heart of “a fraud of epic proportions,” according to Assistant US Attorney Nicolas Roo in court.

Roos continued by saying that he had never fled, had voluntarily returned to the US, and had drastically reduced his financial assets.

Sam Bankman-Fried, who formerly ran a $32 billion crypto empire, once claimed to have only $100,000 in his bank account.

This was a dramatic decline for the man.


The following are the charges against Sam Bankman-Fried:

  • Perpetrating a multibillion-dollar fraud on his investors
  • Using customer funds to purchase properties
  • Funding political donations
  • Backstop trades at his hedge fund Alameda Research

SBF, FTX, and Alameda Research were all charged with further crimes by the Commodity Futures Trading Commission last week.

They claimed that FTX mingled customer funds and that Bankman-Fried violated the Commodities Exchange Act.

Allegedly having access to more than $8 billion in client funds was Alameda Research.

Since the company’s founding in 2019, Alameda has had access to and utilized FTX customer funds for its operations and activities, including:

  • Trading
  • Funding
  • Investment
  • Borrowing/lending

The SEC’s accusations that Sam Bankman-Fried operated his empire as a fraud from the start were supported by the CFTC as well.

FTX submitted bankruptcy protection in Delaware on November 11.

John Ray III, Sam Bankman-Fried’s replacement as CEO of FTX, asserted that he had never seen such a loss of corporate control.

SBF’s lieutenants

On Wednesday, Caroline Ellison, a former co-CEO of Alameda Research, and Gary Wang, a co-founder of FTX, both pleaded guilty to federal charges.

Gary Wang pleaded guilty to the following:

  • Conspiracy to commit wire fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit commodities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit securities fraud

Meanwhile, Caroline Ellison was guilty of:

  • Two counts of wire fraud
  • Two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit commodities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit securities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit money laundering

Their plea agreements were made public on Wednesday.

Read also: The Federal Reserve impact on stock market; Thursday market updates


The US Attorney charged Sam Bankman-Fried with eight offenses, including money laundering and securities fraud.

He was transported by air from the Bahamas to New York on Wednesday night.

SBF’s bail is far higher than that of other federal white-collar defendants.

  • While waiting for his massive Ponzi scheme trial, Bernie Madoff posted a $10 million bail.
  • Former Enron CEO Jeff Skilling posted a $5 million bond.
  • Elizabeth Holmes, the Theranos founder, posted a $500,000 bond.


FTX founder Sam Bankman-Fried to be released on $250 million bail, will live with his parents

CFTC piles on new charges against Bankman-Fried, FTX and Alameda

FTX’s Gary Wang, Alameda’s Coraline Ellison plead guilty to federal charges, cooperating with prosecutors

CFTC slaps lawsuit on Binance, crypto industry looks shaky

CFTC — The crypto market in the United States is in turmoil, with businesses battling with regulators.

Crypto fans in the United States, for example, are not permitted to trade crypto derivatives.

To add salt to the wound, major foreign trading platforms for crypto derivatives are not allowing Americans to trade the instruments.

They may only do so if they are registered with the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), a powerful federal regulator.

The CFTC has sued Binance, the world’s most renowned cryptocurrency exchange, for trading items without first registering with the agency.

Binance allegedly considered bailing out its competitor exchange FTX in November 2022.

Nevertheless, after closely watching the exchange platform, Binance withdrew, avoiding a major government fraud probe into FTX.

What happened?

The CFTC charged Binance and its CEO, Changpeng Zhao, with violating US laws.

Among the alleged infractions is privately counseling “VIP” clients residing in the US on how to avoid compliance laws.

The commission also oversees derivatives trading in the United States.

Binance and Zhao, according to the CFTC, directed staff and consumers to circumvent compliance safeguards in order to enhance business profits.

The CFTC lacks the authority to file criminal charges.

But, the regulator can demand large fines, which might prevent Binance from registering in the US in the future.

The prospective ban might be devastating for the corporation, as the United States is home to hundreds, if not millions, of cryptocurrency fans.

The response

Binance stated that the lawsuit was unexpected and disappointing when the news broke.

The business emphasized that it has made considerable expenditures in the last two years to ensure that US-based investors are not active on the platform.

After the lawsuit was announced on Monday, Zhao tweeted the number 4, referring to a prior comment he made:

“Ignore FUD, fake news, attacks, etc.”

FUD is a frequently used acronym in the crypto field that stands for “fear, uncertainty, and doubt.”

Binance contended for years that it was not subject to US regulations since it did not have a physical presence in the country.

Although being based in China, the crypto trading platform does not have a physical headquarters.

Changpeng Zhao claims that the company’s headquarters are wherever he is.

According to the CFTC’s lawsuit, Binance’s method was an intentional attempt to circumvent regulation.

Read also: Nvidia executive dismisses crypto

The bigger picture

The CFTC’s case may be a setback for Binance, but it has broader implications for the cryptocurrency industry.

Yet, the case is not as significant as everything else that transpired in 2022.

The FTX bankruptcy, for example, caused a domino effect throughout the crypto industry, prompting enterprises and projects exposed to the corporation to either freeze or shut down.

Terra/Luna also underwent a breakdown, causing the value of crypto assets and NFTs to plummet.

Nonetheless, the Terra/Luna problem has seen major advances in 2023.

Prices for the two main cryptocurrencies, Bitcoin and Ethereum, plummeted by more than 3% on Monday, which was a normal day for crypto trading.

Worst-kept secret

The CFTC’s case is most notable for naming one of its worst-kept secrets in cryptocurrency.

Consumers in the United States have extremely easy access to hazardous offshore crypto derivatives that should be forbidden.

Because crypto derivatives are leveraged wagers on extremely volatile assets, anybody with a VPN may access them.

While this approach is simple, it is strongly discouraged.

The endgame

According to Blockchain Intelligence Group crypto compliance and regulation specialist Timothy Cradle, the most likely consequence is that Binance will pay hundreds of millions of dollars in fines to the CFTC.

In addition, the business would be barred from registering derivatives exchanges.

The move would not only be devastating for US consumers, but it would also affect a large chunk of Binance’s earnings.

According to the complaint, American consumers generate 16% of the income for Binance’s derivatives products.

Other regulators

The Monday announcement only increases regulatory pressure on one of cryptocurrency’s most famous figures.

According to Bloomberg, the US Revenue Agency and the Securities and Exchange Commission are also looking into Binance.

The SEC issued a Wells Notice to Coinbase, one of the largest US-listed crypto exchanges, last week for suspected securities law breaches.

Silvergate and Signature Bank, two important linkages to the conventional banking sector, were lost to the crypto business in early March.

Crypto regulation in US creating a hindrance, a16z reports

Crypto — In the last month, the crypto market has seen a shift as US rules began to target enterprises, some justified and others just wrong.

Many in the United States believe that the regulatory efforts are a danger to American innovation.

On Tuesday, a16z (Andreessen Horowitz) issued a research amid the escalating regulatory atmosphere around cryptocurrency in the United States.

According to the paper, a continual stream of enforcement measures and court cases might lead to a reduction in America’s dominant influence in the crypto arena.

The report

Andreessen Horowitz’s investment arm highlighted a fall in numerous measures connected to crypto-related activities in the United States.

The business included a new section on legislation and policy in its regular “State of Crypto” report.

The United States was a forerunner and had a large presence in the digital assets field in 2018, accounting for about 40% of all crypto developers.

However, the survey found that the number has been decreasing in recent years.

The number of developers is expected to fall below 30% by 2022.

Furthermore, traffic to crypto-related websites from users in the United States has fallen for the third year in a row.

Only around 15% of traffic last year came from Americans accessing websites like CoinGecko, CoinMarketCap, and Etherscan.

In 2019, it was more than 23%.

A declining situation

The falling figures are said to be affected by a reduction in digital asset values.

Furthermore, Web3 is growing in popularity across the world, which might be another aspect to consider.

Regardless, the paper concentrates on a16z’s policy perspectives, providing suggestions to authorities on how they should behave.

“Banning new business models or technologies undermines American values and drives innovation and jobs elsewhere,” the report stated.

“Legal businesses and their customers deserve access to financial services and lawful protections, from banking relationships to data privacy.”

Read also: Reddit boosts NFT collection with Gen3 collection

The crackdown

The US Securities and Exchange Commission targeted many major companies in the digital asset market in March.

The SEC penalized Kraken, a long-standing US-based bitcoin trading firm, $30 million.

The company was forced to discontinue its staking-as-a-service product as a result of the litigation.

The SEC subsequently turned its attention to popular US crypto exchange Coinbase, issuing a Wells Notice about its staking products.

The Coinbase strike generated community outrage, with CEO Paul Grewal writing in a blog post that the Wells Notice didn’t offer enough information for the firm to reply to.

“The SEC staff told us they have identified potential violations of securities law, but little more,” said Grewal.

Binance was the second to be sued by the CFTC for suspected breaches of derivatives trading regulations.

CEO Changpeng Zhao, on the other hand, had frequently advised consumers to disregard FUD, fake news, and attacks.

Calls for clarity

The a16z study urges federal agencies to implement new regulations and advice that might lift the cloud of regulatory uncertainty that has descended over the United States.

The call to action falls within the purview of a Financial Services Subcommittee.

In 2023, the subcommittee was established as an entity to develop regulatory regulations and guidelines.

Legislation was also mentioned in the study as a possible source of clarification, with an emphasis on the following:

  • The Responsible Financial Innovation Act
  • The Digital Commodities Consumer Protection Act
  • The Digital Commodities Exchange Act


The a16z research emphasized courts, adding that various cases across the United States might further define the country’s regulatory framework in 2023.

The cases vary from CFTC and SEC litigation to bankruptcy proceedings for failing enterprises such as Celsius, FTX, and Voyager.

The SEC’s continuing litigation against Ripple was at the top of a16z’s list.

The case centers on a lawsuit that the corporation has been seeking to resolve since 2020, but it might be resolved soon.

The SEC’s complaint centered on the company’s $1.3 billion in unregistered securities offerings, with the conclusion potentially having a significant influence on how cryptocurrencies are categorized.

Furthermore, the report mentioned the Tornado Cash scenario.

The advocacy organization Currency Center is presently challenging the US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Asset Control (OFAC) over how it sanctioned the Ethereum-based currency mixer, which might prove to be a significant court battle.

“Businesses should be the focus of regulation, whereas decentralized, autonomous software should not,” the report noted.

Image source: Bitnation

SEC criticized by crypto executives for lack of clarity

SEC – After the current events in the crypto field, some executives from crypto businesses have expressed their dissatisfaction with the US government.

Several have chastised them for a lack of understanding of the industry’s regulations.

Yet, the Securities and Exchange Commission is a key target of the crypto community’s fury owing to its aggressive efforts against crypto businesses.

US & crypto

While other countries are becoming receptive of Bitcoin, the United States is lagging behind.

The government has yet to adopt a complete set of legislation that would allow cryptocurrency and blockchain enterprises to operate without fear of being targeted by officials.

With the collapse of cryptocurrency exchange FTX in 2022, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) has taken the initiative to increase legal measures against firms.

The clash

The SEC issued a Wells notice to Coinbase, one of the leading cryptocurrency exchanges, on Wednesday.

It issued a warning to the corporation after discovering probable breaches of US securities law.

In addition, the SEC charged crypto entrepreneur Justin Sun with fraud and unregistered securities against celebrities who promoted digital currency he was advocating.

The SEC is now involved in a legal battle with numerous other cryptocurrency startups, including Gemini, Genesis, and Ripple.


“It feels uncollaborative,” said an anonymous crypto executive over the Paris Blockchain Week event.

“It’s very frustrating for players that have been doing right the whole time.”

Meanwhile, ConsenSys CEO and Ethereum co-founder Joe Lubin voiced alarm about the ecosystem.

“I think we’re sort of continuing to watch the SEC play this game of punishing the people that are still surviving,” said president Nicolas Cary.

“And it’s a little bit, you know, sort of frustrating thing to observe.”

The majority of the SEC’s activities include applying contemporary restrictions to the crypto business decades after the Howey Test.

The Howey Test is an important test for determining whether or not something is secure.

Yet, many in the cryptocurrency business believe that is not the best approach to go.

“Where I think you have less successful regulatory regimes is when you try to analyze crypto through the lens of traditional finance,” said Oliver Linch, the CEO of Bittrex Global.

“You say, ‘Well, is it a bit like a security? Is it a commodity?’ No, it’s kind of none of those things. It’s crypto.”

Read also: TikTok ban would be better for China than selling

Clarity & sympathy

The Paris Blockchain Week is one of Europe’s most famous crypto events, and the SEC’s actions were one of the most hotly debated subjects among guests.

Some executives asked US regulators for clarification.

“We’d love to have a little more clarity in regulation,” said Silvio Micali, the founder of blockchain company Algorand.

Some, on the other hand, were more sympathetic to SEC.

They said that the watchdog is following the regulations as they are, and that the US government has the authority to amend them.

“What are they supposed to do? If all you’re given is a hammer, the whole world looks like a nail,” said Linch.

However, Cary stated that the SEC is simply doing its job in order to safeguard customers.


In an editorial article published on The Hill this month, SEC Chair Gary Gensler addressed the issues, claiming that the agency was clear on the laws.

“I find the talking point that there’s a lack of clarity in the securities laws unpersuasive,” he said.

“Some crypto companies might message that the laws are unclearer rather than admitting that their platforms don’t have sufficient investor protection.”

Gensler also identified examples of crypto enterprises that are subject to traditional securities rules, such as when they provide loan products.

Furthermore, he stated that crypto middlemen are not lined up to register with the SEC and comply with Congress’ legislation.

Additionally, the SEC chair stated that enforcement proceedings are another tool in the regulator’s arsenal for weeding out noncompliance.

Falling behind

CEOs cautioned that the United States’ lack of effective regulation might cause the country to slip behind other countries and jurisdictions.

“It’s incumbent, I think, on Congress to actually create a legal regulatory framework that regulates crypto properly, because… crypto is here to stay,” said Linch.

Governments throughout the world are debating how to regulate bitcoin.

Dubai and Switzerland have both recognized themselves as crypto-friendly jurisdictions with favorable regulations.

Meanwhile, the European Union plans to implement the Markets in Crypto-Assets Regulation, or MiCA, in 2023.

It is intended to impose regulations on and around digital currency enterprises.

Ripple’s president, Monica Long, fears the United States may slip behind other jurisdictions in the crypto economy.

“Europe is really emerging as a leader in terms of setting really clear regulations and rules that allow crypto companies and also traditional finance to embrace crypto,” said Long.


Sherrod Brown seeks to ban crypto in the United States

Sherrod Brown: US senator Sherrod Brown recently recommended that US federal agencies take cryptocurrency prohibition into account.

He specifically mentioned the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC).

The news

In spite of proposing the ban, Brown admitted during an appearance on NBC’s “Meet the Press” that it would be “extremely tough” to implement.

The US senator believes that the bitcoin market may expand abroad.

Additionally, he mentioned some American regulators, saying:

“We want them to do what they need to do at the same time – maybe banning it.”

“Although banning it is very difficult because it will go offshore and who knows how that will work.”

To bolster his arguments, Sherrod Brown cited several instances, such as “the threat to national security from Korean cyber criminals to drug trafficking and human trafficking and financing of terrorism and all things that can come out of crypto.” 

FTX’s demise is yet another instructive example.

The FTX collapse

The crypto exchange FTX failed and filed for bankruptcy at the start of November.

The business announced that it would declare bankruptcy under Chapter 11 before examining and selling its assets.

Alameda Research, a business entity and affiliated corporation, also filed for bankruptcy.

However, a few companies are left out of the file, including:

  • Ledger X LLC
  • FTX Digital Markets Ltd.
  • FTX Australia Pty Ltd.
  • FTX Express Pay Ltd.

Sam Bankman-Fried, the company’s founder and CEO, announced his resignation in the release.

Taking over, John J. Ray III said:

“The FTX Group has valuable assets that can only be effectively administered in an organized, joint process.”

Read also: Sam Bankman-Fried made donations to lawmakers before elections

What happened

Sam Bankman-Fried formerly had rockstar status in crypto but quickly lost it.

As part of an equity departure from the company, Binance started selling its holdings of FTT, the native exchange token for FTX, last year.

Investors began withdrawing money from the FTX as the token’s value fell, which prompted the platform to halt withdrawals and proclaim a panic.

Brown’s sentiments

Sherrod Brown requested that various federal agencies work together to address the issue of banning crypto earlier this month.

“Single regulatory agencies currently generally do not have a comprehensive view of crypto asset entities’ activities,” he declared in a statement.

Brown, a Democrat who has represented Ohio in the US Congress since 2007, is not the only senior figure who has pushed for more crypto rules.

Last month, Senator Elizabeth Warren introduced a new measure to regulate bitcoin.

The Digital Asset Anti-Money Laundering Act is the name of the proposed legislation.

It tries to have producers of crypto assets furnish audited financial records.

The law also seeks to implement capital standards similar to those employed by banks and other traditional financial entities.

Last but not least, the proposal would give the SEC more authority over the asset class.

Read also: Maxine Water grows strict with SBF invitation on Twitter

Offshore crypto movement

The crypto industry is already shifting activities outside of the US due to the US government’s uncertain regulatory future, in contrast to what the US Senator suggested.

Coinbase CEO Brian Armstrong addressed the issue in a tweet from November.

“ was an offshore exchange not regulated by the SEC.”

“The problem is that the SEC failed to create regulatory clarity here in the US,” he continued.

“So many American investors (and 95% of trading activity) went offshore.”

Armstrong proceeded by labeling the idea of penalties against US companies as absurd.

Brian Armstrong reiterated his desire for US lawmakers to take the initiative and drive the race toward crypto legislation after FTX’s bankruptcy.

He asserted that Coinbase has been a major advocate for the regulation of cryptocurrencies and contrasted his website’s strategies with those of the “offshore exchange” with headquarters in the Bahamas.


Banking committee chair: US regulators should ‘maybe’ ban crypto

FTX files Chapter 11 bankruptcy, SBF steps down as CEO

FTX crisis an ‘opportunity’ for US to clarify crypto regulations: Coinbase CEO

Caroline Ellison testimony sheds light on FTX

Caroline Ellison: In court, the former CEO of FTX’s sister firm, Alameda, admitted that she had lied to lenders about their financial information.

Ellison agreed with the previous FTX CEO to give “materially misleading financial statements” to Alameda’s lenders.

The news

The transcript of Caroline Ellison’s trial testimony was made public three days after she spoke in court on December 19, although SBF was not released on a $250 million bond until then.

The former CEO of Alameda testified to US District Court Judge Ronnie Abrams, saying, “I am truly sorry for what I did – I knew that it was wrong.”

“Did you also know that it was illegal?” the court asked her to clarify.

“Yes,” Ellison answered.

Federal charges

The other co-founder of FTX, Gary Wang, and Caroline Ellison admitted last week to participation in the frauds that led to the company’s downfall.

According to attorneys for the Southern District of New York on Wednesday, the two have been charged.

The Securities and Exchange Commission charged them with participating part in a plan to defraud equity investors.

A change had been made, according to the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC), to its fraud complaint.

According to US Attorney Damian Williams, Ellison and Wang filed guilty pleas.

Williams also expressed gratitude to the Bahamas, the US Embassy there, and the Justice Department’s Office of International Affairsfor their help.

Gary Wang and Caroline Ellison are cooperating with the Southern District of New York.

Before Sam Bankman-Fried had been on his way from the Bahamas to the US, they didn’t reveal their plea agreements.

Read also: Sam Bankman-Fried on $250 million bail, ordered to live with parents

The financial statements

According to Caroline Ellison, the misleading financial statements came from “quarterly balance sheets that concealed the extent of Alameda’s borrowing and the billions of dollars in loans that Alameda had made.”

“I agreed with Mr. Bankman-Fried and others not to publicly disclose the true nature of the relationship between Alameda and FTX, including Alameda’s credit arrangement,” said Ellison.

The following reported about the transcript:

  • New York Times
  • Reuters
  • Bloomberg

A section of the transcript was tweeted by Matthew Russell Lee of Inner City Press.

Early reports

According to reports that surfaced last week, the workers of FTX and Alameda were either aware of or oblivious of what was occurring between the two companies.

The uncertainty generated a lot of discussion before to Ellison and Wang admitted guilt to their charges.

Caroline Ellison’s comments, however, supported rumors that FTX had treated Alameda differently.

Alameda was permitted to withdraw funds from its sister company.

Ellison said:

“I understood that FTX executives had implemented special settings on Alameda’s account that permitted Alameda to maintain negative balances in various fiat currencies and crypto currencies.”

“In practical terms, this arrangement permitted Alameda access to an unlimited line of credit without being required to post collateral, without having to pay interest on negative balances and without being subject to margin calls or’s liquidation protocols.”

She claimed that the former CEO of Alameda and others were aware of the company’s enormous debt and what it implied.

“I understood that if Alameda’s FTX accounts had significantly negative balances in a particular currency,” she continued.

“It meant that Alameda was borrowing funds that FTX’s customers deposited onto the exchange.”

Read also: Google review system pressures employees


Caroline Ellison claims that Sam Bankman-Fried and other executives borrowed money from Alameda while taking part in a number of “large illiquid venture investments.”

She said that in order to repay the loans, she and others had agreed to borrow from FTX in the billions of dollars.

“I understood that FTX would need to use customer funds to finance its loans to Alameda,” Ellison shared.

“Most FTX customers did not expect that FTX would lend out their digital asset holdings and fiat currency deposits to Alameda in this fashion.”

Caroline Ellison also addressed the victims of the FTX collapse, saying:

“I want to apologize for my actions to the affected customers of FTX, lenders to Alameda, and investors in FTX.”

“Since FTX and Alameda collapsed in November 2022, I have worked hard to assist with the recovery of assets for the benefit of customers and to cooperate with the government’s investigation.”

“I am here today to accept my responsibility for my actions by pleading guilty.”


Caroline Ellison ‘knew that it was wrong,’ implicates Sam Bankman-Fried

Caroline Ellison, Gary Wang plead guilty, cooperating in FTX investigation

SEC says Ellison, Wang ‘knew or were reckless in not knowing’ about FTX fraud

FTX collaborators charged, both plead guilty

FTX: On Wednesday, Caroline Ellison, the former co-CEO of Alameda Research, and Gary Wang, a co-founder of FTX, both entered guilty pleas to federal charges.

The charges

The two FTX associates pleaded guilty in the Southern District of New York, according to US Attorney Damian Williams.

Gary Wang entered a guilty plea to the following offenses:

  • Conspiracy to commit wire fraud
  • Wire fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit commodities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit securities fraud

However, Caroline Ellison was accused of more, including the following:

  • Two counts of wire fraud
  • Two counts of conspiracy to commit wire fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit commodities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit securities fraud
  • Conspiracy to commit money laundering

The evening before Sam Bankman-Fried, the former CEO of FTX, was scheduled to depart from the Bahamas for New York, their charges were made public.

He is prosecuted with eight federal felonies by the same federal prosecutors who authorized the plea bargains for Ellison and Wang.

Prior to SBF’s anticipated departure for the US after a contentious court appearance in the Bahamas, their plea deals were finalized on Monday.

“As I said last week, this investigation is very much ongoing,” said Williams in a prerecorded message.

“I also said that last week’s announcement would not be our last. And let me be clear, once again, neither is today’s.”

Read also: Elon Musk addresses Tesla shares decline, cites other factors


Sam Bankman-Fried was charged in the Southern District of New York following his arrest in the Bahamas the previous week.

Intense court hearings have been going on for the last few days regarding whether or not he would consent to his extradition to the US.

After a tense courtroom exchange on Monday, in which a reported plan for him to resist his extradition to the US stalled, he was taken to a Bahamas jail.

Media reports state that later that day, he gave his Bahamian attorney instructions to start the extradition procedure.

Later this week, Sam Bankman-Fried will make another court appearance.

According to earlier reports, he would agree to extradition, but SBF on Monday provided a different account.

Before deciding to return to the US, he insisted on viewing a copy of his federal indictment.

Bankman-Fried, however, chose to stay in jail rather than hand himself in to US authorities.


Gary Wang and Caroline Ellison were the targets of civil lawsuits from the Securities and Exchange Commission and the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, respectively.

The cryptocurrency trading platform FTX, which Samuel Bankman-Fried and Wang co-founded, was the target of a “multiyear scheme to defraud equity investors,” according to the SEC.

The following allegations are contained in the CFTC’s expanded complaint:

“Ellison with fraud and material misrepresentations in connection with the sale of digital asset commodities in interstate commerce.”

Wang is charged with fraud “in connection with the sale of digital asset commodities in interstate commerce,” according to the indictment.

Wang and Ellison allegedly agreed to the accusations against them, according to the CFTC statement.

Caroline Ellison was singled out for intentionally manipulating FTT (FTX’s self-issued token) to enhance Alameda Research’s available collateral for loans.

According to the SEC, Ellison and Wang are cooperating with the investigation.

Read also: Core Scientific joins list of crypto companies filing for bankruptcy

FTX and Alameda

Numerous loans from well-known cryptocurrency companies that declared bankruptcy, most notably Voyager Digital and BlockFi Lending, were connected to Alameda Research.

Damian Williams didn’t go into detail about the accusations against Ellison and Wang.

According to the SEC, they allegedly helped Sam Bankman-Fried cheat FTX clients while serving in their respective roles at Alameda and FTX.

Alameda purportedly gained access to user funds via the FTX platform through a backdoor Wang allegedly added to the software.

Before Caroline Ellison and Sam Trabucco took over in 2021 (Trabucco left the company in August 2022), Sam Bankman-Fried served as Alameda’s CEO.

The second and third people charged concerning the FTX collapse were Ellison, 28, and Wang, 29.

This month, Sam Bankman-Fried, 30, was charged with a federal crime.

“Bankman-Fried and Wang thus gave Alameda and Ellison carte blanche to use FTX customer assets for Alameda’s trading operations and for whatever other purposes Bankman-Fried and Ellison saw fit,” said the SEC.

They said that Trabucco was not connected to any misconduct.

During this time, Wang’s lawyer issued the following statement:

“Gary has accepted responsibility for his actions and takes seriously his obligations as a cooperating witness.”


FTX’s Gary Wang, Alameda’s Caroline Ellison plead guilty to federal charges, cooperating with prosecutors

FTX founder Bankman-Fried sent back to Bahamas jail in day of courtroom chaos

Penguin Random House merge with Paramount called off

Penguin Random House is one of the longest-running and best-known book publishers in the United States, operating for decades in the business.

It originally planned to merge with Simon & Schuster, but parent-company Paramount recently canceled the deal.

Paramount also opted not to appeal a recent federal court decision blocking the publisher merger.

The news

Penguin Random House is a subsidiary of Bertelsmann, the German media giant.

Penguin must pay the parent company of Simon & Schuster a $200 million fine, according to a Paramount SEC filing.

The $2.17 billion proposal was announced in November 2020.

Last month, US District Court Judge Florence Pan ruled that merging the book publishers would unlawfully restrict competition in the industry.

In 2021, the Justice Department filed a lawsuit to block the merger, one of the Biden administration’s first significant antitrust actions.

Read also: Alex Jones remains an unwelcome presence on Twitter

Simon & Schuster

The parent company of Simon & Schuster says in a statement that it is still looking for buyers.

“Simon & Schuster is a highly valuable business with a recent record of strong performance,” they wrote.

“However, it is not video-based and therefore does not fit strategically within Paramount’s broader portfolio.”

Meanwhile, Jonathan Karp, president and CEO of Simon & Schuster, wrote an email saying the news was still fresh.

“And at this point, I have no specific information to impart about what will happen in the coming months,” said Karp.

Read also: TikTok among the companies to keep hiring going

The lawsuit

According to the lawsuit, the settlement would have given the merged company more control over its authors’ compensation.

Penguin Random House and Simon & Schuster are currently among the leading book publishers in the United States and the “Big Five.”

Additionally, the lawsuit argues that there would be fewer bidders available for the highly anticipated books.

The fewer the bidders, the greater the potential blow for authors trying to publish their work.


Penguin Random House’s $2.2 billion deal for Simon & Schuster is over

Meta to cut its workforce in layoff plan

Meta, Facebook’s parent company, announced plans to begin its first major layoffs and cut its workforce amid a struggling economy.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the company’s move comes as it struggles to deal with declining business and growing fears of a recession.

The news

The layoff is expected to affect thousands of Meta employees.

According to the Journal, the layoffs could begin this week, as shared by anonymous people familiar with the situation.

A September SEC filing also revealed that Meta has more than 87,000 employees working today.

Read also: Meta stocks take a dip as it falls 17%

Earnings result

Meta held a conference call in October to discuss the third-quarter results.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg said he expects the Meta team to end 2023 with the same size or become a smaller organization than today.


While it’s still being determined, the potential cuts could be connected to tighter budgets for advertisers.

Additionally, Apple’s privacy changes on iOS influenced the company’s core business.

Meta reported a decline in Q2 revenue last month, reporting that profits had halved from 2021.

The drop in profits is caused by the billions the company spent to build the metaverse.

The metaverse is what many suggest is the future of the Internet; however, there are probably still years to go before it launches.

The social media giant had a market capitalization of over $1 trillion in 2021 but has since declined.

Today, Meta is worth over $250 billion.

The company’s stocks opened more than 5% higher on Monday morning as news of the company’s job cuts surfaced.

Read also: UK gives breakup order, Meta to comply and sell Giphy

Other companies

Meta is one of many companies in the technology sector to rethink its workforce.

Many companies in what was once considered an untouchable industry recently announced job freezes or layoffs.

The decision is a surprise, considering that many companies grew rapidly during the pandemic.

Last week, Lyft announced it would lay off 13% of its employees.

Payment processor Stripe also said it would cut 14% of its workforce.

Additionally, e-commerce giant Amazon has announced that it will stop hiring for corporate positions.

Facebook rival Twitter made heavy cuts last week after Elon Musk bought the social media company.

Twitter’s budget cuts have impacted the government’s AI, marketing and communications, research and policy teams, among many of the departments involved.

According to Bloomberg, Twitter is asking dozens of laid-off employees to return.


Wall Street Journal: Meta is planning significant layoffs

SEC investigations on Yuga Labs cause ApeCoin prices to drop

Ethereum-based ApeCoin (APE) token suffered a precipitous crash amid news from the SEC that Yuga Labs, the creator of the Bored Ape Yacht Club, is under investigation.

Price drop

When news of the Securities and Exchange Commission investigation into Yuga Labs surfaced, the token’s price dropped dramatically, dropping nearly 10%.

According to data from CoinGecko, the price fell nearly 11% in the past 24 hours on Wednesday.

At the time, it dropped to $4.67 per token, which was worth $5.27 over the same period.

Since the report came out, APE’s trading volume has nearly doubled over time.

The ApeCoin price sits at $4.58 as of this writing.


Earlier Wednesday, Bloomberg reported that the SEC was investigating Yuga Labs for securities violations in the sale of the Bored Ape Yacht Club NFTs.

According to the report shared by an unknown source, the agency is also investigating the distribution of ApeCoin.

ApeCoin was launched earlier this year in March 2022.

The official position of the creators of Bored Ape Yacht Club is that he is not the creator of ApeCoin due to regulatory issues.

According to the official ApeCoin website, the “steward” of the Ethereum-based token is the Ape Foundation.

The foundation is designed for use in the growing ecosystem of Bored Ape apps and marketplaces.

A Board of Directors anchors the Ape Foundation made up of leading Web3 creators, including the following:

  • Reddit co-founder Alexis Ohanian
  • FTX Ventures head Amy Wu
  • Animoca Brands co-founder and Executive Chairman Yat Siu


ApeCoin aims to go beyond use in Metaverse games and applications.

It is also a governance token that allows holders to vote on proposals affecting the APE protocol.

Holders are considered part of the ApeCoin DAO.

The Decentralized Autonomous Community is an online group brought together by a common purpose, with affiliation represented by token ownership.

The Bloomberg report says Yuga Labs has not been accused of wrongdoings and may not face charges in the investigation.

Yuga Labs wrote a statement that read:

“It’s well known that policymakers and regulators have sought to learn more about the novel world of Web3.”

“We hoped to partner with the rest of the industry and regulators to define and shape the burgeoning ecosystem,” they continued.

“As a leader in the space, Yuga is committed to fully cooperating with any inquiries along the way.”


ApeCoin sinks 10% after report of SEC probe into Bored Ape Creator Yuga Labs