Former FTX co-founder and CEO Sam Bankman-Fried denied stealing funds Thursday from users of the crypto exchange platform.
“FTX US remains fully solvent and should be able to return all customers’ funds. FTX International has many billions of dollars of assets, and I am dedicating nearly all of my personal assets to customers,” he wrote in a blog published on the American online platform, Substack.
“It’s ridiculous that FTX US users haven’t been made whole and gotten their funds back yet,” he wrote and provided the balance sheet of FTX US.
Bankman-Fried said FTX-linked Alameda Research failed to sufficiently hedge its market exposure and Alameda’s contagion spread to FTX and other crypto companies such as Three Arrows Capital, Voyager, Genesis, Celsius and BlockFi.
He argued that Binance CEO Changpeng Zhao, head of the world’s largest crypto exchange platform, caused “an extreme, quick, targeted crash” that made Alameda insolvent.
“All of which is to say: no funds were stolen,” wrote Bankman-Fried, who has pleaded not guilty to criminal charges in a New York court.
He faces eight charges, including directing an $8 billion fraud, amid the sudden collapse of the company that was once valued at $32 billion.
FTX lawyers said Wednesday they have recovered $5 billion in liquidity, including cash and digital assets.
The attorneys, however, warned that the sale of assets could lead to a selloff in the crypto market, which is already fragile due to the FTX’s implosion.
After the recovery report, the price of Bitcoin, the world’s biggest cryptocurrency by market value, climbed late Wednesday above $18,000 for the first time since Dec. 14.
The total value of the crypto market was $885 billion Thursday for a daily gain of 3.5%, according to data from digital asset price-tracking website CoinMarketCap.
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